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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Lipid lowering: the case for identifying and treating the high-risk patient.

The rationale for the identification and aggressive treatment of lipid disorders in the patient with established vascular disease is thoroughly convincing. Elevated LDL cholesterol level is one of the few risk factors for which there is evidence of involvement in endothelial dysfunction, smooth-muscle proliferation, plaque destabilization, and thrombosis. Longitudinal studies have identified the role of elevated LDL cholesterol and low HDL cholesterol levels in the natural history of coronary artery disease. Clinical trials have successfully tested the feasibility of preventing coronary events using diet therapy or cholesterol-lowering drugs. These experiments have used a variety of end points, including myocardial infarction, cardiac death, total mortality rate, progression and regression of coronary artery stenoses, and progression of extracardiac atherosclerotic disease. The results are strikingly consistent. Economic analyses of the cost-benefit ratios also support these interventions in high-risk patients. These analyses also suggest that patients at high risk for coronary disease prior to its symptomatic presentation may be identified and treated to provide additional avenues for cost-effective primary prevention of this disease. The cardiologic community cannot ignore these results while embracing interventions such as angioplasty, coronary artery disease, antiarrhythmic therapy, and so forth. The scientific basis of cardiology demands the integration of techniques to control the atherosclerotic disease process itself, rather than merely the symptoms that it produces. Cardiology practices must reorganize to allow these proven interventions to become an integral part of comprehensive cardiologic care.[1]


  1. Lipid lowering: the case for identifying and treating the high-risk patient. Pearson, T.A., Swan, H.J. Cardiology clinics. (1996) [Pubmed]
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