Dr. Nancy Sniderman, heart scans on Today Show

While shaving this morning, I caught the report by NBC medical expert, Dr. Nancy Sniderman, about her coronary plaque and CT coronary angiogram.

Those of you in the Track Your Plaque program or who follow The Heart Scan Blog know that we should tell Dr. Sniderman and her doctor that:

She has done virtually nothing that will stop an increasing heart scan score! In fact, Dr. Sniderman is now following the "prevention program" that is eerily reminiscent of Tim Russert's program! We all know how that turned out.

It is pure folly to believe that a combination of Lipitor, exercise, and a "healthy diet" (usually meaning a low-fat diet--yes, the diet that promotes heart disease) will stop the otherwise relentless increase in heart scan score.

Dr. Sniderman, please consider:

1) Having the real causes of your coronary plaque identified. (It is highly unlikely to be just LDL cholesterol, though the drug industry is thrilled that you believe this.)

2) Ask yourself (or, if your doctor knew what she was doing, ask her): Why do I have heart disease? LDL cholesterol is insufficient reason--virtually nobody I know has high LDL cholesterol as the sole cause. LDL cholesterol is, at most, one reason among many others, but is insufficient as a sole cause.

3) What is your vitamin D status? Crucial!

4) What is your thyroid status?

5) Fish oil--a must!

6) Do you have lipoprotein(a)? Small LDL?

Just addressing the items on the above checklist would put you on a far more confident path to stop your heart scan score from increasing.

If you were to repeat your heart scan score, my prediction: Your score will be higher by 18-24% per year.

Comments (6) -

  • dotslady

    2/5/2009 12:37:00 AM |

    I just finished cringing at today's Today Show w/Dr. Nancy S., and ran to see what you'd have to say.  Thank you for saying what you did (my LDL is higher than expected range and my Lp(a) is low).  I've watched and cringed before though (Gardisil vaccine for one): she touts mainstream's mantra, and is a great messenger/advertiser (subtle and not-so-subtle) for GE, parent company of NBC and maker of CT scanners.

  • Anonymous

    2/5/2009 2:12:00 PM |

    I am so disappointed with Dr. Snyderman... she seems like such a nice woman. I think the interview was like a piece of Swiss cheese... full of holes (of information).  She has heart disease "because she ate too many cheeseburgers as a teenager"? Oh really...

    It's been two years (!) since her CTA and she's not had symptoms like shortness of breath, so therefore she's better???  Oh, that's right... she's on a statin and eating better, so naturally she's better.  No proof there, but she's better...

    OMG, how can such a bright woman, and a physician, too,  face her coronary artery disease with the equivalent of blinders and an eye patch?

    It is tragic enough that her heart disease most likely has progressed with this standard treatment, but she also has a wide following who trust her advice... and they will likely think what she is doing is enough to reverse (and she did use the word "reverse") this type of heart disease!  It isn't enough, and she gave inadequate and poorly informed advice to millions of people. What a shame... a real opportunity missed.

    So while Nancy Snyderman, M.D. is smiling, downing a statin, and wearing a Red Dress on Friday... I will be employing a host of TYP strategies ... and scheduling my next advanced lipoprofile analysis!  Real knowledge is powerful!

    Thank you for Track Your Plaque and your spot on Blog, Dr. Davis!


  • renegadediabetic

    2/5/2009 9:21:00 PM |

    She's obviously not much of a medical correspondant.  If she were, she would dig up the data showing statins provide no benefit to women.

    She's probably right about blaming the cheeseburgers she ate as a teenager, but for different reasons.  It's the white flour buns, not the meat & cheese.

  • David

    2/6/2009 12:56:00 AM |

    Speaking of heart scans, here's a negative article about them put out on today's NaturalNews.com newsletter: http://www.naturalnews.com/025535.html

    It's frustrating, because NaturalNews.com has at least some good info (it's a real mixed bag), and a lot of people follow the stuff put out by that site. How many people are going to get turned off to CT scans because of this article, and suffer drastic results because of it?


  • Dr. William Davis

    2/6/2009 3:13:00 AM |

    Hi, David--

    While I'm glad that the media is highlighting the excessive exposure of CT coronary angiograms, they are confusing these high-radiation tests with low-radiation heart scans.

    We can only continue to try and educate everyone, including the media, on the important differences.

  • David

    2/6/2009 4:26:00 AM |

    Well, in all fairness they do point out in the NaturalNews article that they're referring to the CT angiograms, but it still seems a bit misleading because they never really mention it in contrast to the safer, lower radiation scan. So it's likely that anyone reading that article without a trained eye will simply lump all CT scans together and write them all off as unsafe. It's unfortunate.