The American Heart Association says more than 70 million people in the U.S. have some form of heart disease.
High cholesterol puts you at risk for heart disease. It is found in certain foods and it is also made in the body. However, some people make too much cholesterol because of an abnormality in a certain gene.
"People who have variations in this gene develop heart disease at a very early age. It's not uncommon for men to have severe heart attacks before the age of 45, women before the age of 55," explains Dr. David Margulies, CEO of Correlagen Diagnostics.
Because it is genetic, your children may be at risk for heart disease and heart attack at a young age.
"If you have the variation, half of your children will have that variation," says Dr. Margulies.
Now, through a simple blood test, children at early risk for heart disease can be identified.
"The purpose of this new gene test is to identify children who carry the variation that will cause them to have a heart attack at an early age," explains Dr. Margulies.
If a child is at risk, treatment, such as cholesterol lowering medication can be started.
Dr. Margulies says this type of genetic testing can mean the difference between life and death for some people.
"We believe widespread use of this test can prevent 200,000 heart attacks in this country and 50,000 deaths from this disorder,” explains Dr. Margulies.
Dr. Margulies says the test costs about $750 and can be covered by insurance.