What about the Track Your Plaque failures?

I’d love to tell you that the Track Your Plaque program track record is of 100% success. It’s not.

It is very successful. But we’ve had some people who have failed and failed BIG. These are the people who've undergone bypass surgery, received one or more stents, or had heart attacks. Lesser failures are the people who’ve had large, undesirable increases in heart scan scores of >30% in one year. (The expected rate of increase in your heart scan score without preventive efforts is 30% per year, on average.)

What can we learn from those failures? There were several characteristics that stand out among this small group:

· Non-compliance--meaning they just didn’t stick with it. They started out right but then rapidly lost interest in maintaining all the pieces of the program and neglected their fish oil, niacin, gain weight, etc. Matthew did this and ended up with three stents to his left anterior descending. His slow start was due to skepticism that the program worked and just plain forgetfulness.

· Extreme stress--One of our earliest failures was a 38-year old man whose heart scan score doubled in one year, despite doing everything right. But three family members, all close to him, died within the space of six months, including his mother and a brother. I regard this as one of those instances in which we were powerless, unfortunately, though it is a graphic example of the power of unresolved stress and grief.

· Having a “better way”--These are the couple of people who were convinced that they had a better way to control their heart scan score. David firmly believed that his two dozen supplements and exercise program would drop his score. Instead, they permitted a 42% increase. Lee relied exclusively on chelation, along with several supplements of his own design. Lee had three-vessel bypass surgery.

· Starting too late--Gerome started with a score of 1179, but also was having chest pressure with emotional stress. His stress test was abnormal, with the entire upper half of his heart not receiving blood with exercise on a stress nuclear study (“anterior ischemia”). Gerome received four bypass grafts. Unfortunately, Gerome never really had a chance to engage in the Track Your Plaque program, since his health and safety were in jeopardy as soon as he started.

Have we had any big failures of people who did everything right, were compliant, were not subject to extreme stress (more than just job stress, or financial worries), didn’t neglect the basic requirements of the Track Your Plaque program, and had sufficient time (at least 6 months to 1 year)? No, thankfully, we have not.

No one who has stuck to the program has had a big failure.