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Reducing hyperlipidaemia and CHD

By Steve Ohlsen and David Rogers

Coronary heart disease (CHD) accounts for 21 per cent of deaths in England and Wales and 24 per cent in Scotland. However, this disease is preventable and one way of reducing risk is to prevent or treat chronic risk factors such as hyperlipidaemia.


Two thirds of men and women have blood total cholesterol (TC) levels over 5.0mmol/L. The prevalence of raised cholesterol increases with age. In men, the proportion with cholesterol levels over 5.0mmol/L increases from 23 per cent in those aged between 16 and 24 years to 82 per cent in those aged between 55 and 64. This compares with 27 per cent in women aged between 16 and 24 years and 91 per cent in those aged between 65 and 74.

The higher the TC and “bad” low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, the higher the death rate from a heart attack.The higher the level of “good” high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, the lower the risk of a heart attack.

Managing hyperlipidaemia in both primary and secondary care requires an understanding of how this condition is often linked to other CHD risk factors. In fact, many of these risk factors, such as hypertension, smoking and diabetes, are interrelated.


Hyperlipidaemias are common in patients with diabetes and further increase the risk of ischaemic heart disease, especially in people with type 2 diabetes. The major abnormalities seen are low HDL cholesterol and high triglyceride (TG) levels. In addition, even if LDL cholesterol concentration is normal or only slightly raised, the LDL particles in people with type 2 diabetes can be more atherogenic than in people without diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes is often linked with older age groups, obesity and hypertension.

Download the attached PDF to read the full article.

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal URI: 10997170

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