When a blood clot forms, fibrinogen is converted to fibrin, which forms the structural matrix of a blood clot (Koenig W 1999). Fibrinogen also facilitates platelet adherence to endothelial cells (Massberg S et al 1999). People with high levels of fibrinogen are more than twice as likely to die of a heart attack or stroke as people with normal fibrinogen levels (Wilhelmsen L et al 1984; Packard CJ et al 2000). In a review which included data for over 154,000 patients, every 100 mg/dL increase in fibrinogen levels was associated with a significantly increased risk of developing coronary heart disease, stroke, and with vascular related mortality. In one study, those patients with the lowest one-third fibrinogen levels (mean 236 mg/dL) were much less likely to suffer a stroke, develop cardiovascular disease, or die of other vascular related causes when compared to those with the highest one-third fibrinogen levels (mean 374 mg/dL) (Danesh, 2005). This risk goes up even more in the presence of hypertension (Bots ML et al 2002). Fibrinogen levels should be kept between 295 to 369 mg/dl.

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