We all lead busy lives that can make it difficult to keep healthy living a top priority. It’s National Cholesterol Education Month, and I encourage you to find a few minutes during the month of September to brush up on your cholesterol knowledge, understand your risks related to high “bad” cholesterol (also known as LDL-C) and, if necessary, take steps to manage it.
This month also marks another important cholesterol-related observance on September 24 to raise awareness of a condition you might be less familiar with – FH Awareness Day.
So what is FH? Familial hypercholesterolemia – FH — is an inherited form of high cholesterol that can lead to aggressive and premature cardiovascular disease.1 About 1 in 250 people worldwide have FH, but only 10 percent of them are diagnosed.1
How do you know if you might be at risk for FH? The questions below may help:
- Do you have high cholesterol?
– Does high cholesterol (LDL-cholesterol > 190 mg/dL) run in your family?
– Has anyone in your family experienced a heart attack, needed a stent or bypass surgery before 55-65 years of age?
– Do you have a family history of early heart disease or death from cardiac events?– – Have you noticed swelling on your Achilles tendons (the back of the ankle)?
– Do you have yellowish deposits around your eyes?2
While these questions may help you start to understand your potential level of risk for FH, it is critical to speak with your healthcare provider directly for more information.
At Sanofi, we are committed to heart health and raising awareness of the importance of understanding the risks associated with high bad cholesterol and FH. You can get involved in helping raise awareness of this condition by participating in an online conversation about FH Awareness Day using the hashtag #KnowFH.
1. The FH Foundation. “What is FH” https://thefhfoundation.org/about-fh/what-is-fh/. Accessed August 2016. 2. The FH Foundation. “Do I have FH?” https://thefhfoundation.org/about-fh/do-i-have-fh/. Accessed August 2016.