New Film Documents Heartfelt Stories of People Living with High LDL Cholesterol
Managing cholesterol is a private, emotional fight against a condition that cannot be seen or felt.
June 30, 2015
/ -- Managing cholesterol is a private, emotional fight against a condition that cannot be seen or felt. Now, a new film highlights individuals around the world who are connected by one common goal: speaking up to help take down cholesterol. Sanofi and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. engaged Academy Award® winning documentarian
to direct Heart Felt, a film that encourages conversations between patients and their healthcare providers about high LDL cholesterol (LDL-C, or bad cholesterol). Starting today, you can watch Heart Felt on
"I have always been creatively inspired by the power of human emotions, and directing this film allowed me to reveal the very real, personal stories behind the fight against high bad cholesterol," says Wade. "Cholesterol is one of those words that comes up in health conversations, but how many people really understand why it matters? I wanted to help others see what living with high bad cholesterol really means for patients and the healthcare providers, family and friends who may be caring for them."
The film chronicles 19 real-life stories of managing high LDL-C (bad cholesterol) from the perspectives of patients, caregivers and healthcare providers from three different continents, five countries, and nine cities.
, who was diagnosed with high bad cholesterol, is among the patients who share their stories in the film. His family has a history of high cholesterol, and his own diagnosis triggered emotional memories of his mother's experience, which included a heart attack.
"When the doctor first told me what my cholesterol was, I immediately thought back to when my mom was in the hospital 25 years ago," Sarfaty says. "My mother's a strong woman and she usually takes everything in stride, but there was terror on her face when she was being wheeled into surgery to have a triple bypass. I remember thinking she could be gone in an hour. Fortunately, she was fine. But, my diagnosis made me worry that I might not be so lucky."
Despite the availability of current therapies, approximately 11 million Americans still face great challenges in achieving their optimal LDL-C level.
"High bad cholesterol is one of the risk factors for cardiovascular disease, including heart attack and stroke, the leading cause of death in the U.S.," says
, M.D., M.P.H., FACS, and the 17th Surgeon General of
the United States
, who is featured in the film. "Despite its seriousness, LDL cholesterol is not as easily understood by the public as diabetes and hypertension, which can also cause cardiovascular disease. Elevated LDL cholesterol requires prevention strategies and a treatment plan."
Visit TakeDownCholesterol.com to watch Heart Felt and:
- Learn more about types of cholesterol, causes and effects of high bad cholesterol, and how to manage it
- Find links to resources from health organizations
- Sign up for My Plan, a personalized program that provides articles, videos and tools to help individuals set goals and take steps toward better health