SMALL DEPOSITS AROUND THE EYES MAY INDICATE HEART DISEASE, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
Small lipid deposits around the eyes, called 'xanthelasma,' have been found to be indicative of cardiovascular disease, a large Scandinavian study published in the British Medical Journal found. Michael Klag, dean of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, explains.
KLAG: What they found is for xanthelasma, these lipid deposits under the skin, did predict risk of a whole variety of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease, including myocardial infarction, broader categories of ischemic heart disease, stroke, death as well. And that was true after they took into account a variety of other risk factors, so independent of the serum lipids, these xanthelasma, these lipid deposits around the eye predicted risk of cardiovascular disease. What was interesting was that arcus senilis, the rings around the cornea, did not. :32
So a simple physical exam that requires no further sophisticated testing helps predict risk. At Johns Hopkins, I'm Elizabeth Tracey.