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Length of Exposure to High Cholesterol in Young Adulthood May Increase Later Risk For Heart Disease

A new study published in Circulation suggests that length of exposure to high cholesterol should be considered as an additional risk factor for Coronary Heart Disease (CHD). Young adults who had moderately elevated non-HDL cholesterol for prolonged periods, at levels that do not qualify for statin treatment criteria, were more likely than their peers who were exposed to shorter periods of elevated non-HDL cholesterol levels to have CHD in later life. The length of exposure to high cholesterol, and not just the level of high cholesterol, increases the risk of developing CHD. This study suggests the importance of controlling cholesterol level even for young adults.