Creating a free account will enable you to subscribe to our daily and weekly email newsletters, as well as customize your reading experience to show only the categories most relevant to you.
Signing up only take a few minutes, so why not give it a try and see what you've been missing out on.
The study, just published in the September issue of Epidemiology, shows that being a middle-aged male and having high cholesterol levels results in a negative synergistic effect that the researchers did not observe in women. However, current clinical guidelines for treating high cholesterol levels do not differentiate between men and women.
Middle age risks for men
"Our results suggest that in middle age, high cholesterol levels are much more detrimental for men than women, so that prevention efforts in this age group will have a greater potential to reduce the occurrence of a first heart attack in men," said Erik Madssen from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology's (NTNU) Department of Circulation and Medical Imaging, who was first author of the paper with Lars Erik Laugsand, also from NTNU.
The researchers used data from the second Nord-TrĂ¸ndelag Health Study, a county-wide survey carried out in 1995-1997 in Nord TrĂ¸ndelag, Norway, that included blood sample collection from 65,000 people. Because the researchers hypothezised that female sex hormones could possibly protect women with respect to the prevalence of first heart attacks, they restricted their analysis to participants who were younger than 60 years old at the time of the survey.
More than three times more heart attacks
In the end, the researchers had information from 23,525 women and 20,725 men who fit this category. During the nearly 12 years of follow-up on the participants who were younger than 60 years when the survey was conducted, there were 157 new cases of heart attacks in women and 553 in men.
They also conducted a secondary analysis of participants who were 60 years old or older at the time of the survey, which gave them another 20,138 individuals for the analysis. However, there was no evidence of a negative synergistic effect in male participants in this age group.
"Our findings suggest that middle-aged men with an unfortunate cholesterol profile have a significant additional risk of myocardial infarction than what previously has been thought," Madssen and Laugsand said. "Thus, these men should be treated more aggressively than what often is the case today, so that more infarctions can be prevented and lives can be saved."
Madssen, Erik; Laugsand, Lars Erik; Wiseth, Rune; MĂ¸rkedal, BjĂ¸rn; Platou, Carl; Vatten, Lars; Janszky, Imre; Epidemiology. 24(5):637-642, September 2013.
Article adapted by Medical News Today from original press release. Click 'references' tab above for source.
Visit our Cholesterol category page for the latest news on this subject.
Please use one of the following formats to cite this article in your essay, paper or report:
Norwegian University of Science and Technology. "High cholesterol riskier for middle-aged men than women." Medical News Today. MediLexicon, Intl., 20 Aug. 2013. Web.
8 Dec. 2013. <http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/264977>
Norwegian University of Science and Technology. (2013, August 20). "High cholesterol riskier for middle-aged men than women." Medical News Today. Retrieved from
Please note: If no author information is provided, the source is cited instead.
If you write about specific medications, operations, or procedures please do not name healthcare professionals by name.
For any corrections of factual information, or to contact the our editorial team, please use our feedback form. Please send any medical news or health news press releases to:
Note: Any medical information published on this website is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with a health care professional. For more information, please read our terms and conditions.
This page was printed from: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/264977.php
Visit www.medicalnewstoday.com for medical news and health news headlines posted throughout the day, every day.
© 2004-2013 All rights reserved. MNT (logo) is the registered trade mark of MediLexicon International Limited.