Chapter 4: Familial Hypercholesterolemia (FH) What is Familial Hypercholesterolemia? Familial Hypercholesterolemia, or FH, is one of the most common inherited disorders leading to very high cholesterol. “Familial” means it runs in families and is transmitted from generation to generation. If untreated, FH leads to early heart disease and can be life-threatening at a young age. Your liver is constantly producing the cholesterol your body needs to build cells. Individuals with FH are unable to recycle this natural supply of cholesterol; therefore, cholesterol levels in people with FH are exceedingly high. Over time, these elevated cholesterol levels in the blood can lead to blockages in the arteries of the heart and/or brain, putting them at a much higher risk of heart attack or stroke. People with FH have a high cholesterol level from birth, because they have a lack of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) receptors that remove cholesterol from the blood. There are two forms of FH. If you inherit this genetic mutation from one parent, you have Heterozygous FH (HeFH). HeFH occurs in 1 in 250 people worldwide. If you inherit FH from both parents, you have Homozygous FH (HoFH). This form has much more severe consequences and is very rare, occurring in about 1 in one million people worldwide. 22 Certain ethnic groups are more susceptible to having FH. These include people with Lebanese, French Canadian, Ashkenazi Jewish and South African Afrikaner backgrounds. These populations can have a Familial Hypercholesterolemia frequency rate of as high as 1 in 67.
P854 Acute Coronary Syndrome
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