The presence of lipemic serum in fasting persons without associated diseases was first recognized and described as essential hyperlipemia by Burger and Grutz.1 Symptoms of this disease may be lacking entirely, or there may be weakness, fatigue, angina pectoris, intermittent claudication, and abdominal pain. Physical signs may include xanthomatosis, lipemic retinalis, hepatosplenomegaly, and peripheral vascular insufficiency. The fasting lipemic blood contains increased amounts of neutral fat, phospholipids, and usually cholesterol. Previous case reports have inferred that the disease state is not associated with arteriosclerosis. However, arteriosclerosis is associated with essential hyperlipemia,2-5 and an effort should be made to correct the elevated blood cholesterol and neutral fat.
With the restriction of fat in the diet the serum lipids in mild cases of essential hyperlipemia generally return to normal values. However, complete clearing of the fasting serum has not always been achieved, and a fat-poor diet is generally not palatable.
AMATUZIO DS, HAY LJ. Dietary Control of Essential Hyperlipemia: Effect of Dairy Foods, Phospholipid, Coconut Oil, and Alcohol. AMA Arch Intern Med. 1958;102(2):173–178. doi:10.1001/archinte.1958.00260200001001
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