Elevated Triglycerides Leads Increased Atherosclerotic CV Events

According to results from the KP REACH* trial, elevated triglyceride levels appear to impart a higher risk of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease events while also protecting against death in statin-treated patients.

Elevated Triglycerides Leads Increased Atherosclerotic CV Events
Photo: Triglyceride Test | InStyleHealth


373,389 primary preventive patients (mean age 65 years, 51% women, 44% people of color) and 97,832 secondary prevention patients were included in the study (mean age 71 years, 37 percent women, 32 percent people of color).

All of the patients had a low-density lipoprotein cholesterol level of 41–100 mg/dL, at least one risk factor, or had atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease, and were taking statins. The primary and secondary preventive cohorts had median triglyceride levels of 122 and 116 mg/dL. In comparison to non-Hispanic White patients, triglyceride levels dropped with age and were generally lower in non-Hispanic Black patients and higher in Hispanic and Asian/Pacific Islander patients.

In the primary prevention cohort, multivariable Cox analyses revealed that patients with triglyceride levels 150 mg/dL had a lower risk of death (hazard ratio [HR], 0.91, 95 percent confidence interval [CI], 0.89–0.94) but a higher risk of major adverse cardiovascular events (HR, 1.14, 95 percent confidence interval [CI], 1.05–1.24).

In the secondary prevention cohort, triglyceride levels less than 150 mg/dL were linked to a lower risk of death (HR, 0.95, 95 percent CI, 0.92–0.97) but a higher risk of all-cause hospitalization (HR, 1.03, 95 percent CI, 1.01–1.05) and major adverse cardiovascular events (HR, 1.04, 95 percent CI, 1.05–1.24).

The findings suggest that, in addition to being a marker of nutritional status, triglycerides can serve as a surrogate for atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease risk, therefore further risk-reduction techniques are needed to enhance outcomes even more.


Source: J Am Heart Assoc 2021;doi:10.1161/JAHA.120.020377

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