Research Article

Lipid and lipoprotein concentrations in 1604 men and women in working populations in north-west London.

Br Med J 1977; 2 doi: (Published 06 August 1977) Cite this as: Br Med J 1977;2:353
  1. J Slack,
  2. N Noble,
  3. T W Meade,
  4. W R North


    Serum lipid and lipoprotein concentrations in men and women vary with age, and so-called "normal" limits should take account of this. Serum cholesterol, triglyceride, and phospholipid concentrations were measured in 1027 men and 577 women in five working populations in north-west London, and lipoprotein electrophoresis and quantitative analyses of lipoprotein concentrations were also performed. In men the best fit between serum cholesterol, triglycerides, and phospholipids, on the one hand, and age, on the other, was given by a curvilinear relationship expressed as a quadratic regression. In women the best fit was given by a linear regression. White men had higher serum cholesterol and triglyceride concentrations than Black men, and these differences were reflected in the distributions of the lipoproteins. There were no differences between values in White and Black women. Young women on oral contraceptives had lipid concentrations similar to those of older women not on these preparations. These data suggest that the adoption of concentrations of serum cholesterol (275-300 mg/100 ml (7-1-7-8 mmol/l) and triglycerides (175-200 mg/100 ml (2-0--2-3 mmol/l) recommended by a recent report on the prevention of coronary disease as limits above which special attention should be given to the management of hyperlipidaemia could result in as few as 2% of younger men or as many as 31% of older men being selected for treatment.