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Cardiovasc Diagn Ther. 2017 Apr;7(Suppl 1):S4-S10. doi: 10.21037/cdt.2017.04.04.

Current guidelines on prevention with a focus on dyslipidemias.

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Trinity College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland.
Adelaide Health Foundation, Tallaght Hospital, Dublin, Ireland.
Department of Pharmacological and Biomolecular sciences and IRCCS Multimedica, University of Milan, Milan, Italy.
Heart Disease Prevention Program, Division of Cardiology, University of California, Irvine, USA.


Examination of the current the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association (ACC/AHA) and European Society of Cardiology/European Atherosclerosis Society (ESC/EAS) guidelines on the prevention of cardiovascular disease and the management of dyslipidemias finds much common ground. Both note that Atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) is, in most people, the product of a number of risk factors, notably tobacco exposure, hyperlipidemia, hypertension, inactivity, overweight and diabetes. They stress that risk calculators can help in the assessment of risk in apparently healthy persons. Persons with established ASCVD and many with diabetes or renal impairment are at high to very high risk and warrant intensive risk factor advice and guideline-based preventive therapies. The ACC/AHA guidelines favor the universal use of statins in all high-risk subjects and in primary prevention where the global risk exceeds 7.5% in 10 years, with a percentage reduction in low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) based on statin intensity as the "goal". In contrast, the ESC/EAS guidelines favor a goal or percentage-based reduction in LDL-C based on total risk and baseline LDL-C level. Both guidelines consider certain imaging and other measures to stratify risk as well as the use of non-statin therapies in those not achieving recommended targets. Perhaps the most important challenges are to stress similarities rather than differences, and to simplify communications with both healthcare professionals and the public.


Atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD); cardiovascular risk; cholesterol; low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C); risk factors

Conflict of interest statement

Conflicts of Interest: IM Graham has received speaker fees confined to talks on the content of the guidelines and on risk estimation from MSD and Pfizer. AL Catapano has received speaker/consulting fees from Aegerion, Abbot, Amgen, BMS, Eli Lilly, Genzyme, Kowa, Merck, Novartis, Pfizer, Recordati, Roche, Sanofi and Sigma-Tau. ND Wong has received research support thorough his institution from Amgen, Regneron and Gilead, and speaker/consulting fees from Amgen, Merck, Pfizer, Sanofi and Regeneron.

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