We wanted to ascertain whether the current format of lipid laboratory reports seemed adequate to promote identification and treatment of patients with dyslipidemia. In a random survey of lipid laboratory reports from 25 laboratories, we found great inconsistencies among reporting formats and contents. Fewer than half the laboratories correctly reported the ranges for cholesterol, only 4 correctly reported ranges for high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, only 2 correctly reported ranges for triglycerides, and none presented low-density lipoprotein cholesterol ranges in terms of risk factors for coronary heart disease. Reports typically were disjointed and difficult to read. The current practice of reporting results for lipid panels is confusing and does not follow the National Cholesterol Education Program (NCEP) guidelines. We recommend that reporting of results be standardized, and a "model" standardized report is presented herein, based on consensus from a team of experts. The standardized report uses current recommendations for ranges, follows the flowcharts of the NCEP guidelines, and takes the patient's clinical condition (the number of risk factors and the presence of coronary heart disease) into consideration. Standardizing lipid reports should decrease confusion and perhaps increase application of the guidelines and patient compliance with treatment.
- Clinical laboratory
- Coronary artery disease
- Coronary heart disease
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine