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Editor's Correspondence
May 8, 2000

When Should Lipids Be Measured in Myocardial Infarction?

Arch Intern Med. 2000;160(9):1377-1378. doi:

In their excellent review article, Harper and Jacobson1 state that "Lipid measurements should not be performed within 60 days of a myocardial infarction or major surgical procedure." We do not agree.

For patients who are hospitalized with a myocardial infarction, lipid levels obtained within the first few hours of the acute event will tend to reflect their usual values. Thereafter, levels will tend to be lower than usual and may not return to baseline for up to 12 weeks.2 Nevertheless, lipoprotein analysis should be performed before discharge because low-density lipoprotein cholesterol that is elevated at that time will rise even higher when the patient has returned to metabolic stability, which can provide a basis for treatment decisions.2

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