Fast Five Quiz: Lipids Management: High HDL Cholesterol Levels (Hyperalphalipoproteinemia)

Romesh Khardori, MD, PhD


December 03, 2020

Figure 1. The transport of cholesterol via HDL in the blood.

An HDL-C level of 60 mg/dL or more is considered a negative risk factor (protective factor) for atherosclerosis, according to the US National Cholesterol Education Program Adult Treatment Panel III guidelines. An HDL-C level between 40 and 60 mg/dL is considered to be in the normal range. An HDL-C level less than 40 mg/dL is considered a high-risk factor for atherosclerosis. Interventions to increase HDL-C levels have been shown to produce a reduction in coronary heart disease events. However, studies have shown that once HDL-C levels reach 60 mg/dL, there is no evidence of additional benefit to further increases in HDL-C. In fact, there may be an increased risk of atherosclerotic disease with very high HDL-C levels, although exact cutoffs have not been established.

Learn more about HDL-C levels and their role in the development of atherosclerosis.


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