(HealthDay News) — Many patients are not being treated in accordance with the 2013 American College of Cardiology/America Heart Association (ACC/AHA) cholesterol guidelines, according to a study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

Thomas M. Maddox, MD, from the VA Eastern Colorado Health Care System in Denver, and colleagues examined the impact of the 2013 ACC/AHA cholesterol guidelines on current U.S. cardiovascular (CV) practice. 

They assessed current practice patterns as a function of the 2013 cholesterol guidelines using the National Cardiovascular Data Registry Practice Innovation and Clinical Excellence registry data.

The researchers found that 96.1% among a cohort of 1,174,545 patients were statin-eligible (91.2% atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease [ASCVD]; 6.6% diabetes; 0.3% off-treatment LDL ≥190 mg/dL; 1.9% estimated 10-year ASCVD risk ≥7.5%). 

Overall, 32.4% of patients were not receiving statin therapy and 22.6% were receiving non-statin therapies. A total of 20.8% of patients had two or more LDL cholesterol assessments during the study period, and 7.0% had more than four assessments.

“Achieving concordance with the new cholesterol guidelines in patients treated in U.S. cardiovascular practices would result in significant increases in statin use, as well as significant reductions in non-statin therapies and laboratory testing,” the researchers wrote.


  1. Maddox TM et al. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2014;64(21):2183-2192.