Patient advocacy organisations across Europe are banding together to improve cardiovascular health.
In a consensus statement issued Monday, advocacy organisations highlighted the release of cholesterol management guidelines from the European Society of Cardiology and the European Atherosclerosis Society as a chance to improve heart health throughout the continent.
“The guidelines present an opportunity to empower and equip people across Europe with knowledge about the risks associated with high low-density lipoproteins,” the statement notes.
The groups identified key guidelines messages for people living with cardiovascular disease, high cholesterol or diabetes. Those include:
• LDL cholesterol is not just a biomarker for cardiovascular disease. It is, in fact, causal. This increases the urgency for treatment and early detection.
• The advice to “know your number” underscores the need for people with cardiovascular issues, dyslipdaemia or diabetes to take control of their cholesterol level.
• Lower is better when it comes to LDL cholesterol.
• Addressing risk factors and making behavioural changes are important for people to improve their cardiovascular health. The earlier, the better.
• Primary and secondary prevention improves health and saves lives.
The groups behind the consensus document “commit to a unified effort” to educate and raise awareness about the 2019 guidelines. “Health care providers do not always have time to discuss cholesterol and cardiovascular health with patients at length,” the statement notes, adding that it’s up to patient organisations to “provide clear, accessible information about the recommendations.”