Posted by: notdeaddinosaur | September 14, 2009

This is What I’m Talking About

I have a patient with coronary artery disease.

One of the recommendations for the management of patients with coronary artery disease is that they take a statin medication to lower their LDL cholesterol.

I know this. I prescribed simvastatin, an inexpensive generic statin medication, for this patient.

The results of a recent blood test reveal that the LDL cholesterol is 182. This is too high.

I know this.

Here is what I did:

I called the patient up and said, “Your cholesterol is still pretty high. How often do you forget to take your statin medication?”

The patient admitted that he frequently forgot to take it.

Here is my management plan:

I encouraged the patient to take the medication every day without fail, and after 2-3 months repeat the blood test to see how well simvastatin, an inexpensive generic medication, worked for him.

A week after this, the patient had a routine follow-up appointment with his cardiologist.

Here is what the cardiologist did about the patient’s LDL cholesterol of 182:

He switched the patient to Crestor, an expensive brand-name statin medication.



  1. Before we can complain about the status quo, we need to come up with an alternative…a compelling alternative. We have to give people a reason to change their habits. “It’s good for you” is CLEARLY not enough. It wasn’t good enough to induce different behaviour in us as children, so what should make it any different for us as adults? I wish I had the ‘hot’ button. For the sake of my country…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: