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J Am Geriatr Soc. 1999 Dec;47(12):1458-65.

Managing dyslipidemia in older adults.

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1
Preventive Cardiology Program, University of Wisconsin Medical School, Madison 53792, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

To summarize and critically review clinical trial data regarding dyslipidemia as a risk factor for coronary heart disease (CHD) and the efficacy and safety of lipid-lowering interventions in older adults. Based on these data, clinical recommendations for diagnosing and managing dyslipidemia in older adults are provided.

METHODS:

Peer-reviewed journal articles were identified by a MEDLINE search and a review of journal article references. Studies that were performed exclusively in subjects older than 65 years or that included a large subgroup of older adults were included.

CONCLUSIONS:

Elevated low density lipoprotein and total cholesterol levels are independent risk factors for CHD events in patients aged older than 65 years. Older adults have a higher risk of mortality attributable to hypercholesterolemia. Diet and lipid-lowering medications safely and effectively lower cholesterol levels in this age group. Exercise increases high-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels and decreases triglyceride levels. If accompanied by weight loss, exercise may reduce low-density lipoprotein and total cholesterol levels. Improving lipid levels in older adults with CHD decreases the risk of future coronary events by up to 45%, and significant effects on outcome measures may be observed within 2 years of the initiation of therapy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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