Does High Cholesterol Cause Heart Attack Or Stroke?

A stroke occurs when your brain does not receive enough blood to operate correctly. The brain cells may begin to die as a result of this.

Plaque development can constrict and stiffen your arteries. As a result, blood flow in your arteries, particularly those in your brain, may be restricted. An ischemic stroke occurs when an artery becomes clogged, cutting off blood flow to areas of the brain.

What Are The Warning Signs Of High Cholesterol?

Because the relationship between cholesterol and stroke changes depending on the type of stroke and the type of cholesterol involved, it is complicated.

Does High Cholesterol Cause Heart Attack Or Stroke

Various Types Of Stroke

Strokes are divided into two categories:

Stroke with Ischemia: An ischemic stroke occurs when a blood clot or plaque blocks a blood vessel.

Stroke with Hemorrhage: When a blood vessel ruptures, causing sudden bleeding, a hemorrhagic stroke occurs.

High blood cholesterol levels can raise your chances of having an Ischemic stroke. This is because elevated cholesterol contributes to atherosclerosis or plaque buildup in the arteries. Plaque is a fatty material made up of the following ingredients:

  • Cellular waste products 
  • Cholesterol
  • Fibrin\scalcium

Cholesterol Species

Another key issue is that not all cholesterol is created equal. Diverse kinds of cholesterol can have quite different physiological effects. 

  • In terms of its propensity to affect the heart and brain, low-density lipoprotein (LDL) is the “bad cholesterol.” It is a crucial factor in the formation of arterial plaque. LDL cholesterol levels of more than 130 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) are connected to a higher risk of ischemic stroke.
  • The “good cholesterol” is high-density lipoprotein (HDL). HDL levels of more than 35 mg/dL aid to prevent ischemic stroke by assisting in the transport of LDL to the liver and out of the bloodstream, as well as stabilizing existing plaques.

Increased HDL levels continue to provide protection, with HDL levels over 60 mg/dL conferring the greatest advantages, while HDL levels below 35 mg/dL are linked to a higher risk of stroke.

When a plaque ruptures, parts of the plaque break off and travel through the bloodstream, where they may lodge in arteries supplying oxygen to the brain. Blood can clot as a result of the ruptured plaque, increasing the risk of obstructed blood flow.

Cholesterol Species

The Impact Of Cholesterol-Lowering Drugs

Lower-cholesterol medications, particularly the statin class of pharmaceuticals, have been demonstrated to reduce the risk of stroke and may also minimize the severity of a stroke if one happens.

Statins and other cholesterol-lowering medications assist to prevent plaque development, which reduces stroke and heart disease, by lowering LDL levels.

Statins have even been proven to lower the risk of stroke in people with normal cholesterol levels.

Statins have the following effects:

  • Prevent plaque formation.
  • Assist in the stabilization of plaque deposition.
  • Aid in the reduction of fatty and fibrous plaques, making them more resistant to rupture.
  • Reduce inflammation and the formation of blood clots.

Large studies have found clear links between statin use and a lower risk of stroke. According to one meta-analysis (a study that combines the findings of numerous other research), statin treatment reduces stroke risk by 21% and every 10% reduction in LDL levels results in a 15.6 percent decrease in stroke risk. 

Specific statin studies have produced even more remarkable results. Several studies have discovered that while statins reduce stroke risk in general, the greatest effect is seen in those who have never had a stroke. Those who have had at least one stroke or mini-stroke benefit from statins, but the effect is weaker.


Thus we concluded that a high cholesterol person may be at risk of having a stroke or heart attack but can be avoided with medications and proper prevention.

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