(HealthDay News) – High low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol remains common among U.S. adults, according to a study published in the Sept. 1 issue of The American Journal of Cardiology.

Paul Muntner, PhD, from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and colleagues analyzed data from nationally representative samples of U.S. adults aged ≥20 years from six consecutive National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys in 1999–2000 (1,659 participants); 2001–2002 (1,897); 2003–2004 (1,698); 2005–2006 (1,692); 2007–2008 (2,044); and 2009–2010 (2,318). The authors sought to determine trends in the awareness, treatment, and control of high LDL cholesterol.

The researchers observed no change in the prevalence of high LDL cholesterol from 1999–2000 (37.2%) to 2009–2010 (37.8%). There was an increase in awareness of high LDL cholesterol, from 48.9% in 1999–2000 to 62.8% in 2003–2004, but no further increases were observed through 2009–2010 (61.5%). Treatment increased from 41.3% in 1999–2000 to 72.6% in 2007–2008 and decreased to 70% in 2009–2010 among individuals who were aware of having high LDL cholesterol. The percentage of treated patients with controlled LDL cholesterol increased from 45% in 1999–2000 to 65.3% in 2005–2006, and declined slightly to 63.6% in 2009–2010.

“Additional efforts are needed to prevent high LDL cholesterol and increase the awareness, treatment, and control of high LDL cholesterol among U.S. adults,” the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to Amgen, which supported the study.

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