Neimann Pick C ("childhood alzheimer's") & XMRV


Near Cognac, France
Interesting. My cholesterol has also tested high in recent years (7 in UK parlance). But I wonder if this is necessarily a 'bad' thing or if the cholesterol may be a side effect.

My illness started in 1986 and around that time I had a lot of blood tests (no record of cholesterol unfortunately). However in 1986 my testosterone level was 25 nmol/L (reference range for males all ages = 10.5 to 30) and by 2000 had fallen to 11.1 - still within the normal range but very low for me. Apparently testosterone normally falls by 25% from peak in the early 20s to aged 75! Around the late 90s I suddenly developed a whole range of new symptoms including rapid weight gain, rapid greying and hot flushes suggestive of the male menopause (viropause).

Cholesterol rather than just being a nuisance is the building block material for all the steroid hormones including the sex hormones and it is well known that feedback loops continually regulate the level of hormones/neurotransmitters etc in response to needs.

The literature I've read on the viropause lists many symptoms similar to ME symptoms including loss of exercise tolerance, depression, anxiety etc and high cholesterol and heart disease. Interestingly testosterone supplementation is said to reverse these changes including a reduction of testosterone levels to normal.

On the other hand, statins (which reduce the level of available cholesterol) are known in rare cases to cause ME symptoms in previously 'healthy' patients and in a large number of patients fatigue is a side effect.

Is it possible that cholesterol levels are automatically raised in an effort to support the production of steroid hormones which is the main problem rather than the cholesterol? Certainly neuro-endocrine dysfunction is a common finding in ME.

Anecdotally my mother suffered from an early menopause in her early 30s (dismissed as impossible by her doctors) had continually high cholesterol and died young from liver cancer.