Cholesterol and lipids in the risk of coronary artery disease--the Framingham Heart Study

Can J Cardiol. 1988 Jul:4 Suppl A:5A-10A.


The USA is about to launch a massive campaign to identify those members of the population at risk for coronary artery disease (CAD). A screening process based on the high blood pressure campaign started in the 1970s aims at identifying those people with elevated cholesterol so measures can be taken to prevent fatal or nonfatal heart attacks. Data from 35 years of the Framingham Heart Study have shown that factors other than total or low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol must be considered when evaluating CAD risk. In fact low levels of high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol are as much a risk factor for CAD as high LDL cholesterol. The best simple test for predicting CAD is the ratio of total:HDL cholesterol and using this criterion, approximately half the population of North America is at risk for heart attack. This highlights the necessity for a screening program of cholesterol levels, and as there are tests available which can measure cholesterol in under 10 mins, the time should soon be here that everyone knows their CAD risk.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cholesterol / blood*
  • Coronary Disease / blood
  • Coronary Disease / prevention & control*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Lipids / blood*
  • Male
  • Mass Screening
  • Massachusetts
  • Middle Aged
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Time Factors


  • Lipids
  • Cholesterol