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Study shows cholesterol testing to be cost-effective

Category: Heart Health and Cholesterol

As the nation's obesity epidemic continues to worsen, doctors and health experts across the country are recommending more cholesterol testing to determine an individual's heart risk. The suggestions from the medical community follow a recent study, which found that screening may be an effective way to identify individuals who are most in need of intervention. 

A team of researchers from the Stanford University of School of Medicine tested different scenarios under which patients may be prescribed statin medications. They were looking for the most cost-effective model.

They found that C-reactive protein testing - a common measure of cholesterol levels - is a major part of determining individuals who will benefit the most from statin therapy. Instituting wider testing may help reduce the costs associated with treating heart conditions.

"Ideally, a marker would tell us who will benefit from drug treatment and who will not," said Mark Hlatky, who led the study. "If a test could give us that information, it would be very cost-effective."

He added that he hopes the findings may influence future recommendations on cholesterol testing and treatment.

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