Main outcome measures: Population mean total, low-density lipoprotein and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (TC, LDL-C and HDL-C) and triglyceride (TG) concentrations, prevalence of dyslipidaemia, and treatment according to 2001 and 2005 Australian guideline target levels.
Results: Population-adjusted mean TC, TG, LDL-C and HDL-C concentrations were 5.38 mmol/L (95% CI, 5.30–5.45), 1.50 mmol/L (95% CI, 1.43–1.56), 3.23 mmol/L (95% CI, 3.16–3.30) and 1.46 mmol/L (95% CI, 1.44–1.49), respectively. Prevalence of hypercholesterolaemia (TC > 5.5 mmol/L or on treatment) was 48%. Lipid-lowering medication use was reported by 12%. Seventy-seven of 183 participants with established cardiovascular disease (CVD) or diabetes were untreated, and of the 106 treated, 59% reached the target LDL-C. Of those without CVD or diabetes already treated, 38% reached target LDL-C, and 397 participants at high absolute risk did not receive primary prevention. Ninety-five per cent of treated individuals with CVD or diabetes and 86% of others treated had cholesterol measured in the previous year. Sixty-nine per cent of individuals at low risk aged over 45 years had their cholesterol measured within the previous 5 years.
Conclusions: A comprehensive national strategy for lowering mean population cholesterol is required, as is better implementation of absolute risk management guidelines — particularly in rural populations.
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