Family Heart Foundation Study Shows Increased Rate of Cardiovascular Events Among Individuals with High Lipoprotein(a)
MILAN, ITALY, May 22, 2022 – The Family Heart Foundation today announced study results that demonstrate individuals with elevated Lipoprotein(a) — also referred to as Lp(a) — levels experience an increased rate of cardiovascular events. While average Lp(a) levels may vary among racial and ethnic groups, the Lp(a) level appears to be the main driver of risk. The results are being highlighted in a poster presentation titled, “Real-World, Observational Study of Elevated Lp(a) and Cardiovascular Events,” at the 90th European Atherosclerosis Society Congress being held May 22-25 in Milan, Italy.
“Lp(a) is rarely measured and the impact of inherited elevation on cardiovascular disease is not completely understood,” said Mary P. McGowan, M.D., chief medical officer, Family Heart Foundation, and lead author of the study. “This observational analysis of real-world data from 253,983 patients demonstrates that individuals with high Lp(a) levels had significantly greater annual cardiovascular event rates.”
Elevated levels of Lp(a) increase inflammation, plaque buildup inside the arteries, and appears to promote clotting of the blood. These attributes can contribute to blocking the flow of blood and oxygen to the heart or brain and result in a heart attack or stroke. Almost everyone gets tested for high cholesterol, but in the U.S. few people are screened for high Lp(a). Testing for Lp(a) requires a simple blood test, but it is not part of a standard lipid panel, and it needs to be ordered directly.
Using the Family Heart Foundation’s large, real-world U.S. national database and advanced analytics techniques, the observational study tracked major cardiovascular events from time of first Lp(a) measurement to determine the risk adjusted annual cardiovascular event rate. Individuals having low versus high Lp(a) level were compared across six cohorts with or without atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD), and/or probable or diagnosed familial hypercholesterolemia (FH) using case-controlled propensity score matching. Probable FH was determined using the Family Heart Foundation’s validated machine-learning model.
The poster will be available on the virtual congress platform to meeting participants during the entire congress.