Lipoprotein(a) Level and Heart Attacks – (03-11-01)

Lipoprotein(a) Level Linked to Coronary Events in Middle-Aged Men

I really hate to beat a dead horse, but checking only cholesterol levels with the copious amounts of research on other blood-related risk factors is outdated and a disservice. What is interesting about this study is that the degree of risk from lipoprotein(a) is related to the presence of other risk factors. More support of a global approach to disease management.

J Am Coll Cardiol 2001;37:434-439 – Perhaps ending a longstanding controversy, a new population-based study connects elevated levels of lipoprotein(a) with increased coronary risk in middle-aged men, especially those with high LDL cholesterol levels, low HDL cholesterol levels, hypertension and/or other risk factors. Dr. Arnold von Eckardstein, from the Westfalische Wilhelms-Universitat Munster, Germany, and colleagues collected data on 788 men, 35 to 65 years of age, who participated in the Prospective Cardiovascular Munster study. Over 10 years of follow-up, the researchers evaluated levels of lipoprotein(a) as well as traditional cardiovascular risk factors. During that period, 44 men experienced myocardial infarctions, while the remaining 744 subjects survived without a major coronary event or stroke, according to the research team’s report in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology for February. Dr. von Eckardstein’s group found a 2.7 times increased risk for coronary events among men whose lipoprotein(a) levels were 0.2 g/L or more, compared with subjects with lower levels. The risk was especially prominent in men with LDL cholesterol levels of 4.1 mmol/L or more (relative risk 2.6), and men with HDL cholesterol of 0.9 mmol/L or less (relative risk 8.3). The risk was also strongly associated with hypertension (relative risk 3.2). “Because lipoprotein(a) increases the risk of coronary events strongly depending on the presence of additional coronary risk factors, it is imperative to strictly control additional risk factors in individuals with elevated lipoprotein(a),” Dr. von Eckardstein and colleagues conclude.


James Bogash

For more than a decade, Dr. Bogash has stayed current with the medical literature as it relates to physiology, disease prevention and disease management. He uses his knowledge to educate patients, the community and cyberspace on the best way to avoid and / or manage chronic diseases using lifestyle and targeted supplementation.