Noninvasive diagnosis of ruptured peripheral atherosclerotic lesions and myocardial infarction by antibody profiling
Many patients have their routine stress test and come away with a sense of relief that nothing was found. Unfortunately, these patients can be just as likely to drop dead of a heart attack leaving the center because of the concept of unstable plagues. We are all aware of the concept of atherosclerosis and plaquing in the arteries of the heart. However, what many are not aware of is the idea that a plaque in a big artery taking up 25% of the opening can break free, travel to a smaller vessel and take up 100% of that opening, leading to a heart attack.
So the important concept is not just the presence of a plaque, but how STABLE that plaque is. There are lifestyle factors that play a role in the stability of a plaque (higher intakes of omega 3 fatty acids, less inflammation, etc…) but it is still difficult to asses. Certain ultrasound procedures can determine the stability of a plaque, but are somewhat invasive.
This article looks at a fantastic approach with bloodwork to help asses a patient’s likelihood of having an unstable plaque. Keep your eyes on this approach in the future–it’ll be highly, highly valuable.