How do we recognize impending heart problems?
To identify heart problems before they happen, we use the Myeloperoxidase enzyme test. This test, developed by leading cardiovascular doctors at Cleveland Heart Lab, is specific and very sensitive, with the ability to detect heart problems months prior to an actual event. The Myeloperoxidase enzyme test is more accurate than any other lab test, including cholesterol, C-Reactive Protein, and homocysteine, used to detect impending heart problems. (For more information about the reliability of cholesterol to predict heart problems, please search under “cholesterol” on our blog site.)

How we track plaque?
Myeloperoxidase, abbreviated MPO, is an enzyme that is secreted by our immune cells as a protective response to vulnerable plaque that exists in our blood vessel walls.  Vulnerable plaque is plaque that has formed in our blood vessel walls due to chronic systemic inflammation, and is highly unstable. Vulnerable plaque can increase in thickness and congest our blood vessel walls locally, or rupture and form a clot elsewhere.  In either case, the heart or brain can suffer the serious effects of poor circulation due to plaque build up in our blood vessels.

In addition to Myeloperoxidase, we use four biomarkers specific for testing heart health as part of our Inflammation Panel.  One of these biomarkers is a cutting edge cholesterol test called Ox-LDL.  Ox-LDL tests the levels of oxidized LDL cholesterol in the blood.  Only oxidized LDL cholesterol can exist in a solid form, which is the form found in plaque, unlike the traditional cholesterol tests, which test non-oxidized forms of cholesterol. We also use F2-Isoprostanes, which is a specific marker for systemic oxidative stress. Systemic oxidation has been shown to be linked to adverse cardiac events. 

The professional online journal,, began their 2013 publication year with an article titled, “State of the oral-systemic union: 2013.” The author of this article, Dr. Richard H. Nagelberg, DDS, discusses MPO (refers to Myeloperoxidase), “Other parameters that indicate an increased risk of vascular disease include the level of myeloperoxidase (MPO). MPO impairs endothelial function and increases the vulnerability of arterial plaque to rupturing, which triggers CV events. MPO predicts the future risk of coronary artery disease in healthy people.” Reference: