- 33 % samples between 30 – 50 years at high risk of developing heart attack and 36% samples at moderate risk
New Delhi, September 22nd, 2015: Cardiovascular disease emerged as India’s top killer around the mid-1980s and ever since, it has been a growing threat. According to the recent WHO data, one in 3 Indians succumb to cardiovascular diseases and an increasing number of individuals less than 40 years are developing cardiac disease or risk factors associated with cardiac disease. It is important to detect these conditions for early intervention and the good news is that a battery of tests is available to make early screening and intervention possible.
Metropolis Healthcare Ltd, a multinational pathology chain recently conducted a pan India PLAC study on over 300 samples. Out of the 311 samples analysed, over 30% between the age group 30 and 50 years were found to be at a high risk for developing coronary heart disease.
Overview: It has been observed that 50% heart attacks occur in patients with normal cholesterol levels. Traditional markers of cardiovascular risk such as total cholesterol levels, HDL, LDL VLDL and triglycerides tell physicians very little about acute risk of heart attack simply because these tests do not include any inflammatory markers. So, individuals with moderate risk as determined by these standard tests may actually be at a greater risk of developing heart attack or stroke than predicted.
What is the PLAC Test? The PLAC test or the Lp-PLA2 (Lipoprotein associated phospholipase A2) test is a simple blood test that predicts the risk of heart attack & stroke in the next 5 years. It is a simple test which can tell you how healthy your heart is and measures the enzyme activity of Lp-PLA2 level in the body.
Why PLAC Test? It has been observed that individuals with normal cholesterol levels and higher levels of PLAC are at a greater risk of developing heart attack. Likewise, individuals with high cholesterol but low levels of PLAC are at a lower risk of developing heart attack and continue to lead a normal life. Hence the PLAC test acts as an independent marker of heart health which is imperative of your cholesterol levels.
How does the PLAC test work? Heart attacks occur when the supply of oxygen rich blood is cut off to the heart. Over the years, when plaque (wax like substance that is made up of fat and cholesterol) accumulates in the arteries carrying blood to the heart, it results in heart disease. When plaque ruptures it leads to heart attack. LP-PLA2 is an enzyme that is involved in the formation of a plaque that is prone to rupture. Thus people with increased levels of blood level of Lp-PLA2 are at a greater risk of developing heart attack and stroke.
Who should undergo this test?
In December 2014, the US FDA has approved this as a screening test in all adults with no history of heart disease. Apart from this, Lp-PLA2 (PLAC) test is recommended in 4 major guidelines.
AACE Guideline 2012 | European Society of Cardiology 2012 | AHA / ASA Guideline 2011 (American Heart Association / American Stroke Association) | AACF Guideline 2010 (American College of Cardiology Foundation)
Metropolis Healthcare Study
Metropolis Healthcare Ltd, a multinational chain of pathology laboratories; has become one of the few laboratories in India to offer PLAC Test. Metropolis conducted a random pan India study on 311 samples for PLAC Test. Out of 311 samples analyzed, about 29% between the age group of 30 and 50 years were found to be at high risk of developing Coronary Heart Disease (CHD). Below are the complete findings.
“It is not a surprise that over 50% heart attacks occur in people with normal cholesterol levels because majority of heart attacks are caused by plaque ruptures. Basically plaques are made of fats and cholesterol found in blood. But a simple cholesterol test does not give any indication on the level of vascular inflammation or does not measure the activity of a rupture prone plaque. This is a simple blood test to assess your heart health.” says Dr. Sonali Kolte, General Manager – Medico Marketing, Metropolis Healthcare Ltd.