Elevated levels of C Reactive protein in the blood is considered a major risk factor for heart disease

The Risk of heart attack increases in people who have very high levels of C Reactive protein and high cholesterol.

According to a study conducted by the New England Journal of medicine of the twelve major risk factors for heart disease, CRP was the strongest predictor of future cardiac events

According to the Harvard physicians health study, CRP levels are able to predict a first heart attack in healthy men six years in advance. People with the highest level of CRP in their blood were three times as likely to suffer a heart attack.

According to the nurses health story, people with high levels of CRP had four times the risk of heart attack even if they were non smokers, with normal cholesterol levels.

C Reactive protein CRP, what is it?

C Reactive Protein is a member of the class of acute phase reactants, as its levels rise dramatically during inflammation processes occurring in the body. Measuring and charting C-reactive protein values can prove useful in determining disease progress or the effectiveness of treatments. CRP is therefore a marker of inflammation.

It is thought to assist in binding to foreign and damaged cells and affect the response to disease.

CRP amounts vary in different people

The amount of CRP produced by the body varies from person to person, and this is affected by an individual's genetic makeup (accounting for almost half of the variation in CRP levels between different people) and lifestyle.

Higher CRP levels tend to be found in individuals who

  • smoke
  • have high blood pressure,
  • are overweight
  • don't exercise,

whereas lean, athletic individuals tend to have lower CRP levels.

Too much inflammation is dangerous

Research shows that too much inflammation can sometimes have adverse effects on the blood vessels which transport oxygen and nutrients throughout our bodies.

Atherosclerosis, which involves the formation of fatty deposits or plaques in the inner walls of the arteries, is now considered in many ways an inflammatory disorder of the blood vessels, similar to how arthritis is an inflammatory disorder of the bones and joints.

Inflammation not only affects the atherosclerotic phase of heart disease, but also the rupturing of plaques which can then travel and interferes with blood flow, causing a heart attack.

CRP levels are measured by a simple blood test

The reason CRP can be used by physicians as part of the assessment of a patient's risk for heart disease, is because it is a stable molecule and can be easily measured with a simple blood test.

In patients already suffering from heart disease, doctors can use CRP levels to determine which patients are at high risk for recurring coronary events.

To measure the CRP level, a "high-sensitivity" CRP or hs-CRP test needs to be performed and analyzed by a laboratory. This is a simple blood test designed for greater accuracy in measuring CRP, which allows the physician to use the result in the assessment of cardiovascular risk.

Guidelines

TOTAL CRP
RISK CLASS
Less then 0.70
Lowest risk
0.7 to 11
Low
1.2 to 1.9
Average
2.0 to 3.8
Higher
3.9 to 15
Highest

Treatments

High C Reactive protein is treated in the same manner as the other cardiac risk factors. Through

  • Quitting smoking
  • losing weight
  • reducing blood pressure
  • Exercises.

Begin living a heart healthy lifestyle now, and reduce all the risks for heart disease.

Parts of this article was taken from the wikipedia free encylpedia it uses material from the C reactive protein article and is lisenced under the GNU documentation lisence

Views: 5371

Comments are closed for this blog post

© 2017   Created by The Library of BiblioCardiograph.   Powered by

Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service