Treating High Lipoprotein(a) - Lp(a)

Lifestyle has little or no impact on Lp(a) levels. Still, diet and exercise can help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, and those with high Lp(a) levels will want to consider making some changes.
lipoprotein apherisis treatment photo

How can I lower my Lp(a)?

Lipoprotein apheresis is currently the only therapy approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for lowering Lp(a) in the United States. Lipoprotein apheresis is a procedure, usually done every two weeks, to remove lipids, including LDL and Lp(a) from the blood. It is approved only for persons with Heterozygous Familial Hypercholesterolemia who have an LDL > 100 mg/dL and an Lp(a) > 60 mg/dL and either coronary artery disease or peripheral artery disease.  Currently, there are studies being conducted in Germany to determine if lipoprotein apheresis, when added to maximum lipid lowering medications, can reduce cardiovascular events as previous observational studies have suggested. 

Visit the Lipoprotein Apheresis Centers page for a list of centers that offer lipoprotein apheresis.

Estrogen, niacin, and PCSK9 inhibitors  are known to lower Lp(a) levels. However, estrogen and niacin have not been shown to protect you against developing heart disease if you have high Lp(a). Preliminary evidence suggests that the cardiac benefit seen with PCSK9 inhibitors is due to both LDL and Lp(a) reduction, but more evidence is needed at this time. Studies specifically looking at PCSK9 inhibitors and Lp(a) are underway.

What new treatments are on the horizon?

There are several promising Lp(a) medications that are now in clinical trials. Visit our clinical trials page to learn more about Lp(a) clinical trials.

In time, we’ll learn if these medications reduce cardiac events – we look forward to sharing any new information with you as it arises.

For now, you should ask your health care practitioner to test your Lp(a) level. If it’s elevated, your first-degree relatives should also be screened and you should work to reduce all risk factors within your control — especially your LDL cholesterol.

lipoprotein(a) treatments