Maj West
For those who are diabetic, the risk of heart disease is even greater. Dr. Patel, why is this the case and what can they do about it?

Dr. Patel
Well, Dr. West, people with diabetes have a substantially increased risk of heart disease. In fact, if you are diabetic and have never had a heart attack, your risk for a future heart event is the same as a non-diabetic who has already had a previous heart attack. Frequently, people with diabetes experience other conditions, such as high blood pressure and high LDL cholesterol, as well as low HDL cholesterol. Since high LDL cholesterol levels are known to be associated with coronary heart disease, management of high LDL levels is extremely important.

Proper nutrition, weight management and increased physical activity are important to your overall health. Medications to improve cholesterol have been shown to be particularly helpful in diabetic patients. If your cholesterol levels are moderately high, despite lifestyle modifications, it’s likely you’ll be prescribed a medication.