High cholesterol is a condition that most of the time is asymptomatic but in some cases a particular symptom may appear on the Achilles tendon, therefore behind the ankle. If we feel it we should immediately ascertain the cholesterol levels with the necessary blood tests.
Those with high cholesterol, especially LDL (the so-called bad cholesterol), risk heart disease and must always keep the situation under control with the help of a doctor. Most of the time, at first, you may not notice the problem as high cholesterol is often asymptomatic.
However, symptoms can emerge especially if you have familial hypercholesterolemia (FH), a genetic condition in which you have exceptionally high blood cholesterol levels. In this case, a specific symptom may appear: a abnormal swelling of the Achilles tendon, at the back of the ankle.
A study from a few years ago, published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, found that high cholesterol can lead to tendon inflammation and that people suffering from familial hypercholesterolemia are more frequently affected by tendon pain and / or swelling.
The swollen and inflamed Achilles tendon, therefore, can be a telltale sign that should never be underestimated. Other warning signs are:
- Xantelasmi: small lumps of cholesterol near the inner corner of the eye. They are usually yellow in color.
- Corneal arch: a pale white ring around the iris, the colored part of the eye. If you are under the age of 50 and the corneal arch is present, this is a strong sign of FH
Although there is no cure for familial hypercholesterolemia, this condition can be treated, which reduces the risk of developing heart disease, having a heart attack or stroke, or needing other treatments.
Unfortunately, diet alone is not enough, but sufferers should make sure that they:
- follow a healthy and balanced diet
- maintain a healthy weight
- do exercise
Fonte: British Heart Foundation / British Journal of Sports Medicine
The article incorporates published studies and recommendations from international institutions and / or experts. We make no claims in the medical-scientific field and we report the facts as they are. The sources are indicated at the end of each article