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Adults 40 years and younger generally aren't tested for lipid level risk—a byproduct of national guidance and clinical trial needs.
A session presented at The Metabolic Institute of America (TMIOA) 2021 World Congress Insulin Resistance Diabetes & Cardiovascular Disease (WCIRDC) meeting in Los Angeles this week highlighted a significant age disparity in US lipid testing.
The presentation, led by Andrew Moran, MD, MPH, of Columbia University, highlighted the little understood—or at least, infrequently practiced—value of screening for and addressing early-age lipid risks for atherosclerotic disease.
In an interview with HCPLIve during WCIRDC, Moran discussed the standards of clinical research and national organizational policies that may feed into the fact that just 1 in every 4 adults ≤40 years old have had a lipids level test—despite that age being the recommended threshold.
“This session would probably be unique for some of the participants because a lot of the focus on treatment and control of lipids is focused on older people,” Moran said. “If you start thinking about why is that—we know that atherosclerosis is a lifelong condition that starts in childhood and kind of evolves over time.”
Moran explained that much of the age disparity in lipid screening and intervention is affected by clinical assessments.
“A lot of the trials on treatment focus on older adults, because clinical trials often last just a few years, and to accumulate the events to see whether the treatment is efficacious, you usually need to recruit older people so that you have those events,” he said.