Lipid-lowering treatment intensity, persistence, adherence and goal attainment in patients with coronary heart disease Journal Articles uri icon

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  • BACKGROUND: To examine patterns of lipid-lowering therapy (LLT) use, and persistence and adherence among patients with coronary heart disease and their associations with lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) goal attainment. METHODS: Observational study among 26,768 patients who had suffered a myocardial infarction or had been revascularized in Stockholm during 2012 to 2018, and followed up through 2019. Outcomes included initiation of LLT, discontinuation, re-initiation, adherence to treatment and LDL-C goal attainment according to the European dyslipidaemia guidelines from 2011 and 2016 (mainly LDL-C <1.8 mmol/L). RESULTS: 82% of patients commenced or continued LLT within 90 days after discharge. Of those, 71% were dispensed an LLT prescription within 30 days (62% of them for high-intensity LLT). High-intensity LLT prescribing increased over time, from 12% in 2012 to 78% in 2018. During a median follow-up of 3 (IQR 2-5) years 73% continued to fill prescriptions for a statin, 26.3% temporarily or permanently discontinued, and 0.5% changed to non-statin LLT. Only 1.3% discontinued statin treatment permanently. Throughout observation, about 80% of patients showed good statin adherence (proportion of days covered ≥80%). LDL-C target attainment was 52% the first year and <50% during subsequent years. LDL-C goal attainment was highest among patients receiving high-intensity statin treatment and showing good treatment adherence. CONCLUSION: In secondary prevention for patients with established coronary heart disease, the proportion of LDL-C target attainment was low throughout the time period of the study, despite increasing use of high-intensity LLT and good treatment persistence and adherence.


  • Mazhar, Faizan
  • Hjemdahl, Paul
  • Clase, Catherine
  • Johnell, Kristina
  • Jernberg, Tomas
  • Carrero, Juan Jesus

publication date

  • September 2022