Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the United States. Billions of dollars are spent studying this disease, testing for it, and trying to prevent it. Most people want to prevent having a heart attack. Just look at the amount of money spent on cholesterol medicine alone in the hopes that it will lower the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Most doctors are using the Framingham Risk Calculator which tries to predict the risk of having a heart attack based on factors such as age, gender, and cholesterol. I believe there is a better way.
A simple blood test is a strong predictor of risk for heart attacks. A 2012 study published in the Journal of Clinical Chemistry shows that elevated levels of high-sensitivity cardiac Troponin I (hs-cTnI) may predict risk of cardiovascular death.
Heart attacks occur when the blood supply to the heart is disrupted. This lack of blood supply results in a lack of oxygen (ischemia) to the heart muscle and results in damage to it. Cardiac Troponin I is a protein which is specific to heart muscle. When heart muscle is damaged it releases this protein into the blood and can be measured.
We have been using this test for over a decade in the ER to better assess if someone is having a heart attack. However, the values being measured in the ER are set to detect damage to the heart muscle in response to a heart attack. The cut off is set in the range of 100 pg/mL. Anything above that is suggestive of heart muscle damage.
Prevent heart attacks
But the interesting thing is that some studies are showing good predictive ability of Troponin I when is is elevated on a much lower level. If we can determine minute elevations of this protein then we may be able to predict a future heart attack. That would be great information!
Revolution Health & Wellness Clinic is all about preventing heart attacks. We do everything we can to identify patients at risk and intervene as early as possible. We perform the high-sensitivity Troponin I test (offered through Singulex) on our patients who may be at increased risk.
This test can help determine risk for cardiovascular disease according to the study mentioned above published in the Journal of Clinical Chemistry. In fact, if this test is elevated then you are 8.5 times more likely to die of a heart attack. That is an 850% increased risk!
Clearly we want to do everything we can to identify patients at high risk and intervene appropriately to prevent these heart attacks. hs-TnI should be incorporated into your annual blood tests and other studies to evaluate your overall risk of cardiac disease.
Schedule your appointment today to ensure that you have the lowest risk possible. Your friends and family depend on it!