A newly published epidemiologic study, using the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) data set, suggests that only 0.8% of adolescents in the United States meet American Academy of Pediatrics criteria to be considered for pharmacologic treatment for elevated LDL (Circulation. 2009;119:1108-1115; available at circ.ahajournals.org/cgi/content/full /119/8/1108, accessed June 11, 2009). In a cohort of 9,868 children aged 6-17 years, mean total cholesterol was 163 mg/dL (4.2 mmol/L), with elevated levels (cut point 200 mg/dL or 5.2 mmol/L) in about 10.7%. Among 2,724 adolescents aged 12-17 years, mean LDL was 90.2 mg/dL (2.3 mmol/L), with elevated levels (cut point 130 mg/dL or 3.4 mmol/L) in 6.6%.
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