Serum HDL-C levels, log (TG/HDL-C) values and serum total cholesterol/HDL-C ratios significantly correlate with radiological extent of disease in patients with community-acquired pneumonia

Clin Biochem. 2006 Mar;39(3):287-92. doi: 10.1016/j.clinbiochem.2006.01.015. Epub 2006 Feb 20.


Background: In several studies, it was shown that there was a marked decrease in serum levels of HDL-C during infection and inflammation in general. In particular, a decrease in the level of serum HDL-C was also shown in pneumonia. Correlations between inflammatory markers such as acute phase proteins, cytokines and serum HDL-C levels were shown. However, there are no studies indicating a correlation between serum HDL-C levels and the radiological extent of the disease (RED) in community-acquired pneumonia (CAP).

Aim: We hypothesized that there could be a relationship between serum HDL-C levels and RED in CAP.

Materials and methods: A case-controlled study, including 97 patients with CAP and 45 healthy subjects, was performed. Chest X-rays of CAP patients were scored for RED, and correlations were investigated between RED scores, serum lipid parameters, the erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) and serum albumin levels.

Results: The mean serum HDL-C level was lower in CAP patients than in controls. A significant and negative correlation between RED scores (REDS) and serum HDL-C levels was detected (r = -0.64, P = 0.0001). There were also significant correlations between REDS and other lipid parameters. Significant correlations between ESR and serum HDL-C levels and between ESR and other serum lipid parameters were also found.

Conclusion: It appears that serum HDL-C levels are generally lower in CAP cases than in healthy controls. Serum HDL-C levels and serum albumin levels might decrease and serum total cholesterol/HDL-C ratios and log (TG/HDL-C) values might increase proportionally with RED in CAP patients. These results might have some significance for individuals having long-standing and/or recurrent pneumonia and other cardiovascular risk factors.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Blood Sedimentation
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cholesterol, HDL / blood*
  • Community-Acquired Infections / blood*
  • Community-Acquired Infections / diagnostic imaging*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lipids / blood
  • Male
  • Pneumonia / blood*
  • Pneumonia / diagnostic imaging*
  • Radiography
  • Serum Albumin
  • Triglycerides / blood*


  • Cholesterol, HDL
  • Lipids
  • Serum Albumin
  • Triglycerides