Apheresis in Coronary Heart Disease With Elevated Lp (a): A Review of Lp (a) As a Risk Factor and Its Management

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Abstract

Lipoprotein (a) (Lp (a)) increases global cardiovascular risk, especially when LDL cholesterol is concomitantly elevated. Epidemiologic data show that Lp (a) concentration in plasma can be used to predict the risk of early atherogenesis in a dose-dependent manner and late stages of atherosclerosis are accelerated by elevated Lp (a). Therapeutic means to lower Lp (a) are limited. The most effective method to reduce plasma Lp (a) concentration significantly is therapeutic apheresis. Because apheresis is laborious and expensive, patients considered for this procedure should suffer from high Lp (a) concentrations, well beyond 50 mg/dL, and have manifested and progressive coronary heart disease despite maximal drug therapy. Experimental data and therapeutic results will be discussed in the present paper.

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