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Toledo news, weather, traffic and sports | Toledo, Ohio, | wtol.com

UTMC patients participate in trials for new cholesterol drug

A new FDA-approved drug is being called a game changer for people who can't lower their cholesterol.

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - A new FDA-approved drug is being called a game changer for people who can't lower their cholesterol.

University of Toledo Medical Center cardiologist Dr. Mujeeb Sheikh has been participating in research for the drug Repatha with local patients.

"Right now [it's] approved for patients who are born with pretty high cholesterol. These are the patients who have genetic disorders that they cannot keep their cholesterol very low," he said.

High cholesterol is the root cause of coronary disease.

Repatha works best when combined with a healthy diet, exercise and statins such as Lipitor.

"It's basically an antibody that attacks a protein in the liver and reduces the bad cholesterol," said Dr. Sheikh.

He says the UTMC patients using Repatha have reduced their cholesterol by 50-60 points. They only use Repatha three times a month.

"We have patients that [their] cholesterol doesn't go down despite what we do. So for those kinds of patients, it's going to be a real game changer," Sheikh said.

Repatha is now available over-the-counter at drug stores, but you need approval from your doctor before getting it.