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What causes mixed hyperlipidemia?

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Quick Answer

Mixed hyperlipidemia is a genetic disorder that causes high levels of both triglycerides and cholesterol, according to Alnylam Pharmaceuticals. This inherited disorder, also called familial combined hyperlipidemia, may become worse if the patient develops hypothyroidism, obesity, alcoholism or diabetes, explains Healthline. People with family members who had early heart disease or high cholesterol also have a higher risk for developing mixed hyperlipidemia.

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What causes mixed hyperlipidemia?
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Full Answer

Patients with familial combined hyperlipidemia develop the condition as teenagers and may experience chest pain as well, notes The New York Times. People with mixed hyperlipidemia are at greater risk for coronary artery disease, obesity, heart attacks and glucose intolerance.

Doctors identify mixed hyperlipidemia through a blood test that tests triglycerides, apolipoprotein B100, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, states Healthline. Patients with this condition have high triglycerides, high low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and elevated apolipoprotein B100 levels combined with low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol.

To treat this disorder, a patient should make doctor-approved dietary changes to lower bad cholesterol levels and triglycerides; ask about taking Omega 3 fatty acid supplements to lower triglycerides; and possibly take medications to lower his cholesterol, suggests Healthline. Most patients who follow these recommendations can limit the health risks inherent with this disorder. However, some people's lipid levels do not respond to treatment, which means they are still at risk for heart attacks.

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