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Johns Hopkins Health - Kids and Cholesterol

Winter 2009
Issue No. 3

Kids and Cholesterol

Date: January 24, 2009

boy eating cheeseburger

Adults aren’t the only ones who should have their cholesterol checked. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends cholesterol screenings for kids with family histories of high cholesterol, early heart disease and sudden cardiac death, and kids who are overweight or obese.

And, if need be, kids are prescribed cholesterol-lowering statins. But, says Johns Hopkins physician and cholesterol expert Peter Kwiterovitch, “we usually don’t use medication before age 10. Most of the early lesions of hardening of the arteries don’t begin until after then.”

Although the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved statins for children to lower cholesterol, Kwiterovitch says it’s also a question of being prudent and trying to identify the pediatric patients who need more attention.

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