In Bristol East, an estimated 440 people are currently living with familial hypercholesterolaemia (FH). Faulty genes mean that the liver is unable to remove bad cholesterol from blood, and can increase the risk of heart attacks and strokes.
FH can be treated successfully through statins and lifestyle changes, but, as was highlighted recently in Parliament, where I met someone from Bristol who inherited FH, and whose dad and grandad died from heart disease in their forties, it is vitally important to get tested.
If you have swellings on your knuckles, knees, or Achilles tendon; yellow lumps near the corner of your eye; or a pale white ring around your iris then you should talk to your family to check if there’s a history of high cholesterol or heart conditions, and contact your GP for a referral.
The British Heart Foundation have more information here.