Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Homocysteine in heart and brain disease


Myocardial infarction (heart attacks) and brain strokes (paralysis) are the two most common causes of death and disability in the world. They occur in all regions of the world, and the prevalence increases with advancing age.

There are a number of known risk factors for causing heart attacks and brain strokes, which include high BP, diabetes, high cholesterol, smoking, positive family history and so on.

Role of homocysteine in heart attacks and brain strokes
  • Homocysteine is a normal amino acid in our blood.
  • However, elevated levels of homocysteine in the blood is an additional risk factor for causing atherosclerosis (narrowing of blood vessels for heart and brain).
  • Elevated levels of homocysteine causes injury to the inside of blood vessel.
Though there are no definite reasons for elevated homocysteine levels, they tend to occur more in smokers and pure vegetarians.

It is easy to identify high homocysteine, by doing a simple blood test in fasting state.

Treatment of elevated homocysteine is also easy. One needs to use certain vitamins (folic acid, and other B group vitamins).
Please consult your neurologist for any further information.

Dr Sudhir Kumar MD (Internal Medicine) DM (Neurology)
Senior Consultant Neurologist
Apollo Health City, Hyderabad
Phone: 0091-40-23607777/60601066

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