‘The Healthy Nevada Project Changed My Life’: A Local Mom’s Story


Read about Jordan Stiteler, a local mom who says the Healthy Nevada Project provided insights into her family’s genetic makeup — and the likely cause of her dad and great grandfather’s deaths. Now she is changing her life due to her new diagnosis of familial hypercholesterolemia, which will allow her to take steps toward preventing the same fate. 

Jordan Stiteler’s dad died suddenly of a stroke nearly ten years ago — at only 45 years old. His grandfather died at age 40.

Now through the Healthy Nevada Project’s no-cost genetic testing, she is closer to understanding why that may have happened. And she can take proactive steps to prevent the unhealthy symptoms that often lead to a stroke and heart problems.

RELATED:  Why It Matters: Healthy Nevada Project Helps Individuals and the Community

After getting her Geno 2.0 by National Geographic ancestry report, Stiteler got a call from Renown Institute for Heart & Vascular Health Cardiologist and Renown IHI Director of Research, Dr. Christopher Rowan.

“They told me that I have FH, which is familial hypercholesterolemia,” she said. “I have genetically very high cholesterol because I have a non-functioning gene that doesn’t get rid of my cholesterol like a normal body would.”

RELATED:  Healthy Nevada Project Returning Clinical Results to Participants

Familial Hypercholesterolemia: Simple Life Changes

Dr. Rowan told Stiteler it is curable with medication and a change in lifestyle. Stiteler has embraced healthy lifestyle changes by exercising more and eating healthier.

“It is so important. Being a mom, I think you have so much more to live for. Having this information has changed my life.”

Stiteler feels confident FH affected her Dad.

“It is helping my family realize that we need to get tested,” she said. “There were big milestones that my Dad missed. He didn’t get to see either of us get married or have our children. That was huge.”

She has become passionate about sharing the need to join the Healthy Nevada Project as her way of helping to prevent other families from possibly going through what she and her family did with the early loss of her Dad.

In addition to FH results, the Healthy Nevada Project is returning clinical results on BRCA 1/2 (hereditary breast and ovarian cancer) and Lynch syndrome (colorectal and endometrial cancer) to consenting study participants. To sign up for the Healthy Nevada Project, go to HealthyNV.org.

Join the Healthy Nevada Project

Recruitment for phase two is still open. In addition to opting in to receive clinical results, participants receive National Geographic’s Geno 2.0 ancestry app at no cost. They also have the chance to pick an additional app for health and wellness after completing a follow-up survey.

* Special Weekend Holiday Hours * 

The Healthy Nevada Project office is closed Thursday and Friday for the Thanksgiving holiday, but will be open Saturday, Nov. 24, from 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.
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