…and not a site change 🙂
Let’s get the “bad” news out of the way quickly & not dwell on it: the BHE had a very serious heart attack this past weekend. He is young, exercises regularly, eats a fairly healthy diet, and isn’t at a risky weight. He doesn’t smoke. There is a family history of heart attacks, but all more than 10 years older than he is right now. We are lucky. He got to the hospital in time and our hospital has a cath lab so he got the immediate care he needed to survive. Because there aren’t many risk factors to mitigate, a big part of his recovery & ongoing prevention strategy is medication — Statin, Beta Blocker, ACE Inhibitor, aspirin, etc.
I’m so grateful that we live in an age, and an area (not to mention insurance), where we have access to treatments like a cath lab and things as “easy” as pills that can help my hubby live a long, healthy life. With that in mind, I need to take a new look at my own refusal (so far) to start a statin for myself. I have had 3 endocrinologists bring it up with me — my LDL cholesterol hovers at the top of the “normal” range (though my HDL is off the charts). One of the endos wasn’t really all that interested, just brought it up and when I said I didn’t think I needed it, let it drop. The second one had a very thoughtful conversation with me about it and conceded that without long-term studies on T1s with in-range A1cs, he couldn’t say definitively that without a statin my cardiovascular risk would be greatly increased and we left it there until something changed. The most recent “discussion” consisted of the temp endo telling me that A1c doesn’t matter at all, if a T1 has ever had a high blood sugar then they are at huge risk of stroke/heart attack and not taking a statin was basically committing suicide. He told me that there was plenty of research to support that conclusion though didn’t point me to any of it. [wow, that appointment went so well… but that’s really a different post.]
Now, things are different. Something has changed. I can see that even a small risk is too big. We have a 6 year old — she needs both of her parents as healthy as possible. I have thought that if I was doing my best with blood sugars then complications wouldn’t apply to me (I know, dumb). After all, isn’t that what the DCCT showed us? The truth is a lot closer to YDMV (your diabetes may vary) and your HEALTH may vary. What if the high blood sugars I do have do enough damage to my blood vessels to cause heart disease? Will I still feel justified in choosing not to take the statin?
I’m still going to do some more research while I wait for my next endocrinology appointment (with a new endocrinologist, thank you very much) and go to that appointment ready to talk seriously about my options and the best possible treatment regimen that offers the most protection with the least amount of risk. And, in the meantime, we should learn a lot about general healthiness as the BHE goes to cardiac rehab. I can’t say for sure that I will choose to go on a statin, but I can say that I will be considering it with a more open mind.