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How often should my homocysteine levels be checked?

Dr. Michael Roizen, MD
Internal Medicine
If a person has severe vascular disease or arterial aging disease, such as stroke, heart attack, peripheral vascular disease, or impotence, and a strong family history of no known risk factors, and he or she is taking the right amount of folate, his or her homocysteine level should be tested at least once. Unless a patient has a high level of homocysteine when he or she is taking the right amount of folate, B6, and B12, repeated measurements are probably not necessary. If the homocysteine level is not normal, then I would recommend repeated measurements. If B6, B12, and folate don't reduce the homocysteine levels into the normal range, then the patient is one of a very rare group of people who may need another therapy. In that case, the repeated measurement of homocysteine levels would be important.

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