On Welchol and watching diet...now my triglycerides are dangerously high

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debgirl
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Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 9
   Posted 1/11/2007 2:56 PM (GMT -6)   
Ok...I was diagnosed with IBS last summer.  I started on the Welchol, and calcium and changed my (eliminated all of the foods that I could identify as triggers).  Now my triglycerides have more than doubled in the last 6 months...soon, I'll be able to eat nothing but cardboard.  HELP!

Canyonbabe711
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Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 1451
   Posted 1/11/2007 5:29 PM (GMT -6)   
Have you had more than one test for Triglycerides? What you eat 24 hours before can really affect them and alcohol REALLY affects them if you regularly drink. Mine were very high at one time like 500. I quit all hard liqour and went on low fat diet and it lowered them to less than 100, however it had little effect on my cholesteral.

Keriamon
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Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 2976
   Posted 1/11/2007 6:08 PM (GMT -6)   
Since Welcol IS a cholesterol medicine, I can't see that it would make your triglycerides high. And unless you are an exception to the IBS rule, you probably are already on a fairly low-fat diet, eat good fats, etc. Canyon's probably right in that you just had a freak spike.

I still remember when eggs were declared evil and everyone was put on a low-cholestrol diet, only for doctors to later realize there is good and bad cholesterol, and that if you have too little of the good--as they were instructing their patients to cut out--you're at high risk for stroke. So I never belive anything they say about cholesterol anymore. Every 5 years they change their minds about what's good and bad, so I think they're just making it all up anyways.

If it were me, I would eat to keep my stomach happy because that's a known problem with clear (and sometimes unbearable) physical manifestations. Who knows if triglycerides are a problem or not? If you're not feeling sick because of them then that, to me, would make them much less of an issue than my stomach which does make me sick if I eat the wrong thing or don't eat certain things. Given the chance to live to 100 with horrible stomach problems every day or live to be 50 and have no stomach problems, I'd rather die young. But no fear; I'm sure they'll change their minds about how bad triglycerides are in a few years and you'll be back in the clear again.

debgirl
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 9
   Posted 1/12/2007 7:42 AM (GMT -6)   
Thank you both for your replies. I don't drink, so that isn't an issue. And I really don't eat a lot that could be considered "bad" as far as fat and cholesterol go. I stick with a few veggies and fruits (and I tolerate canned better than fresh...low sugar canned of course) I know won't hurt me, a few carbs I know I can tolerate, and chicken or tuna. I don't do dairy, I don't eat red meat, I don't eat pork, and I don't even eat turkey because for some reason I can't tolerate that. I've started yet another medication (to help with the triglycerides now) but I won't go off the meds I am taking for the IBS D...Welchol has been my saving grace. I go back next month for a follow up blood draw. I will just not eat anything the entire day before instead of just after midnight.

Canyonbabe711
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Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 1451
   Posted 1/12/2007 2:42 PM (GMT -6)   
I think they feel triglycerides are pretty important as it does measure fat in the blood stream so I would try to get them down. I don't know much about the medicine for it. Hopefully you next test will be more in line and it won't be a worry. This medicine on top of medicine is a pain. I found that I could not take my BP pill anywhere near the time I took my Thyroid pill as it just tore up my stomach. I can take both on a empty stomach but just not anywhere close to each other. It took me weeks to figure out that is was what was making me sick. Personally I refuse to take handfuls of pills like they give you in the hospital. It just doesn't sound like it is your diet for either problem as is my case. They put me on Vytorin and I have yet to take it. Too many other problems more pressing.

Keriamon
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 2976
   Posted 1/12/2007 3:12 PM (GMT -6)   
I think a good question to ask when they give you a pill for some problem you didn't even know you have, is why do you have a problem in the first place? What do they think is causing your triglycerides to be high? Doesn't sound like it's your diet. Sometimes doctors throw pills at people willy-nilly instead of just telling them "quit doing x" or "do x" and that will fix the problem. That's from a combination of doctors getting free handouts from drug companies and Americans generally being too lazy and stubborn to be willing to change themselves in even a minor way. People would rather take a pill with side affects than get up from the couch and exercise 30 minutes a day, or eat fast food less often.

Another good piece of information to have is the "number needed to treat". I posted an article on this some time ago, but the gist of it is, when you are being given maintenance-type medicine (like cholesterol, blood pressure, etc.), ask what the number needed to treat is. When drug companies do studies on medicine, they have to figure out how many people this medicine seems to help. Some cholesterol meds and other types of maintenance meds have a high NNT. For instance, if the NNT was 50, that means out of every 50 people, only one person recieved any benefit over placebo. That's pretty high odds, in my opinion, for the risk of side affects and the cost of being on this medicine for the rest of you life; and yet doctors put patients on these meds by the dozens hoping they'll prescribe it by accident to the one person in 50 who gets a benefit from it. Americans like medicine because it makes them feel safe; it's a shame a lot of people are probably taking medicines that don't help them in the least bit.

debgirl
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 9
   Posted 1/12/2007 3:40 PM (GMT -6)   
Well, that is all great information!  I told them what my diet was like and that I take martial arts (which is a good cardio work out at least 4 days a week).  I know I can't take the med they put me on for the triglycerides at the same time as the Welchol.  I have to take it at least one hour before or 4-6 hours AFTER I take the Welchol...and I am NOT going to stop taking the Welchol.  I take the Tridor in the evening before dinner and then take the Welchol an hour later after dinner.  Then I take my calcium and my fiber about 4 hours after that and my anti anxiety and my antispasmodic about an hour after that.  And I also take 1/2 an anti spasmodic before lunch, a calcium and a fiber after lunch and a dose of Welchol with breakfast.  they are all really helping the IBS...(well, except the Tricor because I don't know what it's doing yet...that's for the Triglycerides).  I'm just distressed that it would go from 263 to 470 in 6 months even after I made all the changes in my diet (I don't eat "fast food" or fried food...my idea of "fast food" is subway...low fat/no fat Jarred's diet!).  Am I running on?  I think I am.  Well, thanks for listening to me!

Keriamon
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 2976
   Posted 1/12/2007 3:45 PM (GMT -6)   
I don't blame you for being concerned that your blood work has changed rapidly and for no reason that anyone can see yet.
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