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Childhood Cholesterol Screening: Contraindicated

Thomas B. Newman, MD, MPH; Warren S. Browner, MD, MPH; Stephen B. Hulley, MD, MPH
JAMA. 1992;267(1):100-101. doi:10.1001/jama.1992.03480010108034.
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WE RECENTLY presented the case against childhood cholesterol screening.1 In short, screening children, even the 25% with a family history of high blood cholesterol or early coronary artery disease, is a waste of money that is likely to do more harm than good. Resnicow et al,2 in "The Case Against `the Case Against Childhood Cholesterol Screening,'" disagree with our position. They make three important points we wish to reiterate: (1) "Extrapolation of findings from... nonrepresentative adult populations to the general pediatric population should be made with extreme caution." (2) "There are many empirical questions regarding the efficacy and safety of early (universal) detection and treatment of hypercholesterolemia in children that can only be answered through controlled research." (3) "Any discussion regarding the early detection and treatment of hypercholesterolemia should be framed by the parameters of whether the ultimate gains, both medical and economic, outweigh the risks."

Given their


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