Experts from Lehigh Valley Heart Institute’s Advanced Lipid Management and Cardiac Prevention Program are focused on helping you reduce your risk for atherosclerosis (plaque buildup in the arteries), with a special focus on managing lipid (cholesterol) disorders.
You may be among the millions of people who have high cholesterol. Most people can manage high cholesterol with the guidance of their primary care physician. In those cases, lifestyle changes and, when recommended, cholesterol-reducing medication can help.
However if you have difficulty lowering your high cholesterol levels, or have other factors that put you at risk for atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), our Advanced Lipid Management and Cardiac Prevention Program can help.
Who should seek additional help for high cholesterol?
Advanced Lipid Management and Cardiac Prevention Program can benefit people who have:
- A family history of coronary artery disease
- Unexplained premature coronary artery disease
- Very elevated low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol
- A Need for combination drug treatment to manage cholesterol
- Secondary dyslipidemia due to diabetes or kidney disease
- A suspected genetic lipid disorder (based on a strong family history of dyslipidemia or LDL cholesterol levels > 190 mg/dl or triglycerides > 1,000 mg/dl)
- Difficulty tolerating standard lipid therapies
We also encourage you to consider this program if you have developed side effects from standard therapies, such as muscle aches, or have liver function test abnormalities. Our physicians are board-certified cardiologists and are experts in cholesterol management. Our program director is a board-certified lipidologist by the American Board of Clinical Lipidology.
We work closely with your primary care physician as well as a referring specialist, if you have one. You may also refer yourself to our program. Our goal is to help you improve your health by addressing all the factors that contribute to heart and blood vessel disease with a specific focus on cholesterol levels.
At your initial appointment
We will perform a comprehensive history and physical and will review all your blood tests. We will utilize specialized blood tests, if necessary, to evaluate lipid disorders and we will review these results with you. We also want to hear from you about your experience with cholesterol medications and how they have worked – or the side effects that caused you to seek alternatives.
We will discuss lifestyle and drug therapies, if appropriate, including advanced therapies.
We also will discuss existing and modifiable cardiovascular disease risk factors. If needed, we will recommend that you work with a registered dietitian
If there is a clinical indication to confirm the diagnosis of familial hypercholesterolemia (an inherited cholesterol disorder), we offer genetic testing through the genetic testing program at Lehigh Valley Health Network.
We will set a date for follow up blood tests to check your cholesterol levels and measure the effect of the treatment plan we decide on together. Our goal at the Advanced Lipid Management and Cardiac Prevention Program is to partner with you to adopt new treatment options, live a heart healthier life, and reduce your future risk of developing cardiovascular disease.