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Lower cholesterol advised for those at risk

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BETHESDA, Md., Jul 12, 2004 (United Press International via COMTEX) -- An update to the U.S. National Cholesterol Education Program 2004 advises stricter guidelines for LDL "bad" cholesterol for those at risk of a heart attack.

The update, published in Circulation, is endorsed by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association.

For high-risk patients, the overall goal remains an LDL level of less than 100 mg/dL. But for people at very high risk the update offers a new therapeutic option of treating to under 70 mg/dL.

"The recent trials add to the evidence that when it comes to LDL cholesterol, lower is better for persons with high risk for heart attack," said NHLBI Acting Director Dr. Barbara Alving.

"These trials show a direct relationship between lower LDL cholesterol levels and reduced risk for major coronary events," she added. "So, it is important to consider more intensive treatment for people at very high risk."

Copyright 2004 by United Press International.


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