Cholesterol and Stroke
Cholesterol is a waxy substance necessary for all living tissue. The body manufactures most of the cholesterol it needs. Additional cholesterol is taken in from certain foods we eat.
Too much cholesterol in the blood is not healthy because it can build up in the walls of arteries, causing the blood vessels to narrow (atherosclerosis). Narrowed blood vessels carry less blood and may increase a person's risk for a stroke or Reference heart attack Opens New Window.
Lowering cholesterol levels in the blood makes good sense, especially for people who are at risk for a Reference transient ischemic attack (TIA) Opens New Window or Reference stroke Opens New Window. Diet changes and, if necessary, drugs can be used to keep blood cholesterol at an acceptable level.
Treatment with cholesterol-lowering drugs called statins can slow the development of atherosclerosis in the carotid arteries for some people and may reduce the chance of having a TIA or stroke, especially for people who have a history of Reference coronary artery disease Opens New Window. For more information, see the topic High Cholesterol.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference January 7, 2011|
|Medical Review:||Reference E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Reference Richard D. Zorowitz, MD - Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation