A few days ago, it was reported that a government agency is making a recommendation that we begin screening children for high cholesterol by age 11. Thats just what we needed; our children taking more stuff in the name of the bogeyman called cholesterol. Why bogeyman you ask? Here are a few reasons you should question these recommendations yourselves;
1. The one size fits all approach of medicine forgets that different peoples bodies work differently depending on genetic makeup. Some people with high cholesterol live in their 80’s and 90’s without having to ever worry about the fact their cholesterol is high. Why do they need to be constantly monitored and have to take a drug that can potentially distroy their liver.
2. cholesterol is just one of 18 risk factors of heart disease. The fear mongerers in healthcare are at it again.
3. A drug company stands to benefit from the recommendation and sell tons of product. Since our government has a huge amount of influence on it from the pharmaceutical industry, this is likely better for them than for the general public. We need to question who really will benefit from taking statins, your children or the company who produces them.
4. These drugs destroy liver and muscle tissues and quite honestly, do we really want to subject our children to this screening which in all likelihood will end up as a drug recommendation.
5. The risk will likely outweigh any benefits of putting children on statins. What the heck are we doing?
Added 11-16-11. If you are wondering about all the rhetoric, today, the day after I posted this, Eli Lilly, send out a press release to all major news outlets that they are pushing to get their new cholesterol drug out (click here to read the release), to compete with Merck and Roche. This was reported at the American Heart Association meeting.
As I said in my comments, the drug companies would like nothing more than to make us all paranoid about cholesterol and have us become obsessed with our numbers, regardless of the “real” benefit to the individual. If you make it the norm that children are screened and put on these meds, it will affect our quality of life (these drugs have harmful side effects), further increases our dependency on doctor visits and is not good for our health. Furthermore, it will put more upward pricing pressure on our already overpriced and under delivering healthcare system.
Doctors: Test all kids for cholesterol by age 11
Nov. 11, 2011, 10:45 p.m. EST
CHICAGO (AP) — Every child should be tested for high cholesterol as early as age 9 — surprising new advice from a government panel that suggests screening kids in grade school for a problem more common in middle age.
The idea will come as a shock to most parents. And it’s certain to stir debate.
The doctors on the expert panel that announced the new guidelines Friday concede there is little proof that testing now will prevent heart attacks decades later. But many doctors say waiting might be too late for children who have hidden risks.
Fat deposits form in the heart arteries in childhood but don’t usually harden them and cause symptoms until later in life. The panel urges cholesterol screening between ages 9 and 11 — before puberty, when cholesterol temporarily dips — and again between ages 17 and 21.