Infectious Disease

Ldl cholesterol take a look at charges drop in a COVID-19 pandemic

February 26, 2021

2 min read

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Gumuser and Honigberg do not report any relevant financial information. In the study you will find all relevant financial information from all other authors.

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According to a study published in the American Journal of Preventive Cardiology, cholesterol levels fell during the COVID-19 pandemic, raising concerns about adequate preventative care for patients.

“The COVID-19 pandemic caused by SARS-CoV-2 has led to a reduction in outpatient medical care and routine preventive screening for cancer and diabetes mellitus.” Esra D. Gumuser, MD, MRS, resident physician at Massachusetts General Hospital, and colleagues wrote. “Guidelines for the prevention of primary and secondary cardiovascular disease recommend routine cholesterol screening and monitoring for those over the age of 40, especially those with established atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. However, data on cholesterol testing since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic is limited. “

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To characterize the trends in cholesterol testing since the onset of COVID-19, the researchers extracted the data from the cholesterol tests performed in the Mass General Brigham healthcare system from March to September 2020 and compared it to the weekly cholesterol Test rates for the same period in 2019.

The study included 296,599 tests for 220,215 people aged 40 or over, of which 112,143 occurred in 2020 and 184,456 in 2019.

The researchers found a 39.2% decrease in cholesterol tests from 2019 to 2020 (weekly mean: 6,361 tests in 2019 versus 3,867 tests in 2020; P = 2.6 x 10-5) with the greatest decrease cholesterol test rates at the beginning of the pandemic months (March-May 2020; up to 92% weekly reduction compared to the same period in 2019).

Upon further analysis, the researchers found a 71.8% decrease in test rates from March to mid-June 2020 compared to the same period in 2019 (weekly mean: 6,669 tests in 2019 versus 1,879 tests in 2020; P = 1 x 10 -7). .

However, the researchers wrote that weekly cholesterol tests returned to normal rates with no differences from mid-June to September by August 2020 (6,072 tests per week in 2019 versus 5,722 tests per week in 2020; P = 0.26).

Michael Honigberg

“One possible effect of these results is that we have neglected important precautionary aspects since the beginning of COVID-19. It is worth remembering that cardiovascular disease remains the leading cause of death in the United States, and treating blood cholesterol is a cornerstone of cardiovascular disease prevention, especially for populations with secondary and high-risk primary prevention . ” Michael Honigberg, MD, MPP, A cardiologist and researcher at Massachusetts General Hospital and a medical instructor at Harvard Medical School, Healio said. “I am concerned that there are high-risk patients who we miss and / or under-treat due to a major reduction in preventive care. Hopefully, as the vaccination reaches a larger number of our patients, patients and doctors will feel more comfortable when they go back to the routine and we can start catching up on parts of the preventative care like cholesterol screening. “

For more informations:

Michael Honigberg, MD, MPP, can be reached at mhonigberg@mgh.harvard.edu.

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