Regardless of whether you’re on the cath table just starting to fade away from the anesthesia or are reading this from home, inflammation is a major, massive player in heart disease. We’ve spent so much time focusing on cholesterol levels, mainly because we had a drug that could lower this value so we fit the disease risk factors to the drug that could control that risk factor. Only recently has inflammation (usually as measured with hsCRP) been looked at as a risk factor.
Percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) is the procedure in which a cardiologist pokes a camera into your coronary arteries to look at how healthy they appear. If there is a problem, the common answer is to place a stent in a blocked artery to make sure that blood continues to flow through this artery to feed the heart. The big problem with this procedure is that these stents have a tendency to plug back up again (restenosis). Two schools of thought exist– the use of bare metal stents or the use of drug eluting stents to lower the risk of restenosis. In this particular study, researchers determined that the inflammation levels were a major determinant in which a bare metal stent or a drug eluting one should be used.
Less simplify this. Manage your inflammation long before you need a stent and the decision won’t be there to make. Exercise, live an anti-diabetic lifestyle, stress less, add a multivitamin, D and mixed tocopherols (Vit E) as well as fix any silent sources of inflammation like poor oral health, poor gut health or food allergies.