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April 1993

Cholesterol: Myth vs Reality in Pediatric Practice

Author Affiliations

Tulane University Medical Center 1430 Tulane Ave New Orleans, LA 70112-2699

Am J Dis Child. 1993;147(4):371-373. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1993.02160280021010

In this issue of AJDC, two reports1,2 address screening of cholesterol levels in children and one3 addresses dietary counseling for a selected group of children with high serum cholesterol levels. Gidding1 provides a rationale for lowering cholesterol levels in American children with a review of the arguments in favor of and opposed to different screening strategies to identify children with elevated serum cholesterol levels, based on recommendations by the National Cholesterol Education Program (NCEP) guidelines for children. Many parents of school-age children are too young to have clinical manifestations of heart disease, and this lack of manifestation results in a family history that is negative for such disease. Because family history is an important criterion for screening, young age of parents affects the sensitivity of NCEP guidelines. Nonetheless, NCEP selective screening will help identify most individuals with familial