In an effort to determine the diagnostic and prognostic value of certain laboratory data in atherosclerosis, values obtained from 294 normal healthy male officers were compared with values obtained from 205 patients with myocardial infarction, 101 with angina, 77 with arteriosclerosis obliterans, 99 with hypertensive cardiovascular disease, and 100 under observation for cardiovascular disease. The data concerned total serum cholesterol levels and two lipoprotein fractions. Significant differences between groups were found, but variations from person to person within groups were too great to permit identification and prediction of atherosclerosis in individuals. The serum lipid values of 10 normal persons who subsequently showed severe cardiovascular symptoms (fatal in four cases) were not consistently high. The serum cholesterol level was as informative as data from the more elaborate procedures. When it is high in a patient, the physician should look for other evidence of premature vascular disease.
Mattingly TW, Parmley LF, Durrum EL, Smith ERB, Hyatt MR. LIPID STUDIES IN HEALTH AND DISEASE: PRELIMINARY REPORT OF THE RESULTS OF LIPID DETERMINATIONS IN A GROUP OF NORMAL MALE OFFICERS AND PATIENTS WITH VASCULAR DISEASES. JAMA. 1959;170(5):536–541. doi:10.1001/jama.1959.03010050030007
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