Navigation Links
Incidence of High Cholesterol Drops in U.S.
Date:11/17/2009

Down by 30 percent, but those with high levels often don't know it, study finds

TUESDAY, Nov. 17 (HealthDay News) -- The good news is that a new report shows the percentage of American adults with high LDL cholesterol, the "bad" kind that clogs arteries, decreased by about one-third between 1999 and 2006.

The bad news is that too many of those who have dangerously high levels of LDL cholesterol don't know it, said study author Dr. Elena V. Kuklina, an epidemiologist and senior service fellow at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Her research is published in the Nov. 18 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

"In the group with high LDL cholesterol, 60 percent of these people do not know they have this condition," Kuklina said. "They are in two major groups -- those who have never been screened, and those who have been screened but not diagnosed."

It is not as easy to test for LDL, rather than total blood cholesterol levels, including "good" HDL, Kuklina said. An LDL test requires fasting for the previous eight hours, "and if you are not prepared for this test, it is not going to be correct," she said. But testing someone and then not informing that person of a dangerously high LDL cholesterol level is not easy to explain, she said.

While many studies have found that overall cholesterol levels in American adults are decreasing, there has not been much information on LDL levels, Kuklina said. The study she did with colleagues at the CDC used data from consecutive results of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. It found that overall prevalence of high LDL cholesterol levels decreased from 31.5 percent in 1999-2000 to 21.2 percent in 2005-2006.

But there is no single definition of high LDL, the report noted. For persons at high risk of major problems because they have diagnosed heart disease, stroke or other cardiovascular conditions, the desired LDL level is 100 milligrams per deciliter of blood. For those at intermediate risk because they have two or more risk factors, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, smoking or a family history of heart trouble, the desired level is 130. For those at low risk because they have no more than one risk factor, the desired level can be as high as 160.

A troubling finding was that the greatest incidence of dangerously high LDL cholesterol is in the high-risk group. The prevalence of high LDL did decrease in that group, but only from 69.4 percent in the first survey to 58.9 percent in the last survey, the study authors reported.

As for the cause of the overall reduction, "we don't know why, we can only speculate," Kuklina said. It could be changes in lifestyle, such as better diet, or it could be more widespread use of cholesterol-lowering medications such as statins, she said.

"But we still have many people we could put on statins," Kuklina noted.

It's important to remember that LDL cholesterol is just "one of many risk factors for cardiovascular disease," said Dr. Thomas A. Gaziano, an assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and an associate physician at Brigham and Women's Hospital, and co-author of an accompanying editorial.

Doctors must consider all the risk factors when dealing with cardiovascular disease, Gaziano said. "We recommend simplifying how the risk is calculated," he said. "Once the risk is determined, therapy should be based on overall risk, not just on cholesterol."

There are different recommendations about the age at which cholesterol screening should begin, Kuklina noted. The CDC, the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute and the American Heart Association recommend that screening tests should start at age 20, she said.

"I don't think it unreasonable to get screened once in the 20s, and then with increasing frequency in the 30s," Gaziano said.

More information

Learn about the different cholesterols and what they do from the American Heart Association.



SOURCES: Elena V. Kuklina, M.D., Ph.D., epidemiologist, senior service fellow, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta; Thomas A. Gaziano, assistant professor, medicine, Harvard Medical School, and associate physician, Brigham and Women's Hospital, both in Boston; Nov. 18, 2009, Journal of the American Medical Association


'/>"/>
Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Drop in breast cancer incidence linked to hormone use, not mammograms
2. Susan G. Komen For The Cure, Karmanos Cancer Institute, Local Hospitals Call on Policymakers to Address Injustice and Unfairness in Breast Cancer Incidence and Mortality
3. Ranexa(R) Significantly Reduces Incidence of CV Death, MI or Recurrent Ischemia in MERLIN TIMI-36 Patients With Elevated BNP
4. Cancer Incidence in the United States: A Progress Report
5. Puget Sound Komen for the Cure, Former First Lady Mona Locke, Washington Health Leaders and Breast Cancer Survivors Call for Action to Reduce States High Breast Cancer Incidence
6. New Asia Pacific Statistics Reveal an Alarming Incidence of HIV in MSM
7. Link between treating osteoporosis with bisphosphonates and incidence of bone necrosis examined
8. Mayo researchers look for explanation behind high incidence of diabetes among Asian Indians
9. Mayo Researchers Look for Explanation Behind High Incidence of Diabetes Among Asian Indians
10. Susan G. Komen for the Cure(R) Calls on Policymakers to Address Unfairness in Breast Cancer Incidence and Mortality
11. Medical Research Should Include More Women Participants and Examine the Role of Gender in Disease Incidence and Treatment
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... June 27, 2016 , ... TopConsumerReviews.com recently awarded their highest five-star ... , Millions of individuals in the United States and Canada wear eyeglasses. Once considered ... both correct vision and make a fashion statement. Even celebrities use glasses as a ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... , ... Brent Kasmer, a legally blind and certified personal trainer is helping to develop a ... fitness app plans to fix the two major problems leading the fitness industry today:, ... type program , They don’t eliminate all the reasons people quit their exercise ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... "With 30 hand-drawn hand gesture animations, ... Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProHand Cartoon’s package transforms ... Final Cut Pro X . Simply select a ProHand generator and drag it above ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... Canada (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2016 , ... Conventional ... pursuit of success. In terms of the latter, setting the bar too high can ... risk more than just slow progress toward their goal. , Research from ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 24, 2016 , ... The Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA) learned ... receive two significant new grants to support its work to advance research and ... by recognizing patients, medical professionals and scientists for their work in fighting pulmonary ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... Belgium , June 24, 2016 ... the appointment of Dr. Edward Futcher ... Non-Executive Director, effective June 23, 2016.Dr. Futcher was ... Nominations and Governance Committees.  As a non-executive member ... independent expertise and strategic counsel to VolitionRx in ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016  MedSource announced today that it ... software solution of choice.  This latest decision demonstrates ... to their clients by offering a state-of-the-art electronic ... establishes nowEDC as the EDC platform of choice ... clients.  "nowEDC has long been a preferred EDC ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... -- Any dentist who has made an implant supported denture ... of them do not even offer this as a viable ... costs involved. And those who ARE able to offer that ... cost that the majority of today,s patients would not be ... , founder of Dental Evolutions Inc. and inventor of Implanova ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: