Hypercholesterolemia is a genetic disorder that remains largely undiagnosed. This causes alarming increases in cholesterol levels, which can result in heart attacks and strokes. It is estimated to be the most common fatal genetic disorder in First World countries. In fact, only one in Europe suffers one person every 250/200.
People suffering from hypercholesterolemia have high levels of "bad" cholesterol or LDL, caused by a mutation in the genes that remove it from the body. Cholesterol therefore continues to accumulate, until it forms large plates and blocks the walls of the arteries.
The children of those suffering from this condition have a 50% chance of suffering in turn. High levels of LDL cholesterol since birth increase the risk of heart attacks by 10-13 times. The family history and blood tests are then used to identify the disorder. For more precise and early results, however, genetic tests may also be useful. In this way the patient suffering from hypercholesterolemia can fight the condition with drugs and a healthy lifestyle.
Genetic testing can also be useful for those who have just had a heart attack. Systematic screening can identify those suffering from this condition, reducing the risk of a second attack. In addition, it can also be helpful for any children and grandchildren, who can check in time if they are also at risk.