Charlotte Gils, Kaare Christensen and Mads Nybo Pages 282 - 287 ( 6 )
Background: Effect of lipid-lowering treatment in the oldest old is a matter of debate as there is no unequivocal evidence of statins being beneficial among the oldest. The need for cholesterol measurements is therefore also questionable, but the frequency of cholesterol measurements in the oldest old has not been described on a population basis. Therefore, the number of lipid measurements in the period 2002-2012 was evaluated for people aged 85+ years.
Methods: The Laboratory Information System and the Population Register at Statistics Denmark were used for retrieving data on people aged 85+ living on the Island of Funen. The development in trends for cholesterol measurements was analysed in age groups of 5-years interval using linear regression analysis.
Results: A total of 30,424 persons with a cholesterol measurement entered the study. The total number of cholesterol measurements increased by 246% during the observation period. The percentage of people having a cholesterol measurement increased significantly (p < 0.001) from 2002 to 2012 for all groups except males over 100 years of age. The increase was only due to requests from general practitioners, not from hospital units.
Conclusion: Despite the uncertainty regarding lipid-lowering treatment in the oldest old, the percentage of people having a cholesterol measurement increased significantly during the study period. Whether this increase in cholesterol measurements leads to increased prescription of lipid-lowering medication in this cohort and/or better outcomes warrants future research.
Aging, cholesterol, age specific trends, requests behavior, risk factor, old age.
Dept. of Clinical Biochemistry and Pharmacology, Odense University Hospital, Denmark.