General Illness Information

Medical Term: Hypercholesterolemia

Common Name: High cholesterol

Description: Hypercholesterolemia is high amounts of cholesterol in the blood.


Depending on the etiological factors, hypercholesterolemia can be divided into:

  1. Primary (also called hereditary hypercholesterolemia). The main reason for its development is a hereditary factor. Homozygous familial hypercholesterolemia is diagnosed if the anomalous genes are present in both parents. Heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia occurs in 90% of patients. This form of primary hypercholesterolemia develops if only one parent has the abnormal gene;
  2. Secondary hypercholesterolemia – progresses only in the presence of factors that are catalysts for the disease, and usually develops against the background of chronic pathologies or metabolic disorders;
  3. Alimentary – the reason for its progression is the wrong way of life and detrimental addictions.


  • Hypothyroidism;
  • Diabetes;
  • Nephrotic syndrome;
  • Obstructive liver disease;
  • Taking medications (progestins, anabolic steroids, diuretics, beta-blockers, some immunosuppressants;
  • Genetics.

Risk Factors:

  • Heredity;
  • Obesity;
  • Hypodinamy;
  • Stress.

Signs & Symptoms:

Hypercholesterolemia is a laboratory indicator that can be detected only by the results of a special blood test.

External symptoms of hypercholesterolemia:

  • xanthomas – dense nodules formed over the tendons;
  • xanthelasm – flat yellow nodules, cholesterol deposits under the skin of the eyelids;
  • lipodinaya arc of the cornea – the deposition of cholesterol in the form of a white or grayish-white rim along the edges of the eye cornea.


To detect high amounts of cholesterol in the blood, laboratory research methods are required. Most often, a person does not even suspect that he has high amounts of cholesterol in the blood. Usually, the increase in cholesterol amounts is detected accidentally, for example, during a preventive examination.

The standard plan for diagnosing this pathological condition includes:

  • collection of anamnesis of ailment and patient complaints. Sometimes the patient complains of pathological formations on the skin – xanth and xantelasm;
  • analysis of the patient’s life;
  • physical examination;
  • analysis of blood and urine;
  • blood biochemistry;
  • lipidogram;
  • immunological analysis of blood;
  • genetic analysis.


All methods of hypercholesterolemia treatment can be divided into the following groups:

  • non-pharmacological treatment;
  • drug treatment;
  • methods of genetic engineering;
  • extracorporeal methods of treatment;
  • natural remedies.

Non-drug therapy includes such activities:

  • weight normalization;
  • giving up smoking;
  • limiting drinks containing high doses of alcohol;
  • physical activity (moderate). The plan for each patient is strictly individual;
  • a diet for hypercholesterolemia is also very important. It is necessary to reduce the intake of animal fats, but at the same time to enrich a diet with dietary fiber and vitamins. Also, patients
  • should refuse fried and fatty foods.


  • statins;
  • inhibitors of absorption of cholesterol in the human intestine. The main purpose of these drugs is to reduce the absorption of cholesterol in the intestine;
  • sequestrants of bile acids;
  • fibrates;
  • omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids. These treatments are necessary, as they significantly reduce the risk of heart rhythm disturbances, and also extend the life of patients who have
  • previously suffered myocardial infarction.

Extracorporeal methods of therapy are used only to severe forms of pathology. Special innovative devices change the composition of blood and its properties (outside the human body).

Natural remedies for hypercholesterolemia should be used only with the permission of the physician and together with the methods of traditional medicine. The most effective natural remedies: the root of the Dioscorean of Nippon; berries of a dogrose; immortelle sandy; leaves watch three-leafed; a powder of seeds of a thistle; the roots of blue cyanosis; grasses; celandine; artichoke prickly.

Possible Complications:

Hypercholesterolemia may cause atherosclerotic changes in the vessels.


Prevention of hypercholesterolemia can be divided into primary and secondary. Primary prevention is a method that should be used to prevent an increase in amounts of cholesterol in the blood. Such events include:

  • normalization of body weight;
  • control of blood pressure;
  • refusing alcohol and smoking;
  • a special diet with a low content of salt and fat;
  • regular exercise;
  • avoiding stressful situations;
  • normalization of blood sugar level;
  • timely and adequate treatment of pathologies that can provoke dyslipidemia.

Secondary prevention of hypercholesterolemia include:

  • pharmaceuticals for cholesterol normalization;
  • a balanced diet;
  • physical activity.


The prognosis for hypercholesterolemia depends on:

  1. the level of pro-atherogenic (causing atherosclerosis) and anti-atherogenic (preventing atherosclerosis) lipids (fat-like substances) in blood;
  2. the rate of development of atherosclerotic changes;
  3. localization of atherosclerosis. The most favorable prognosis is for atherosclerosis of the aorta, the least favorable – for atherosclerosis of the arteries of the heart.

Elimination of risk factors and timely treatment can significantly prolong the life of a patient and improve its quality.


Not specified.

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