What is the accuracy of Lp(a) measurement in predicting cardiovascular risk?

Updated: Aug 05, 2019
  • Author: Abimbola Farinde, PharmD, PhD; Chief Editor: Eric B Staros, MD  more...
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The standardization of commercial assays for Lp(a) has been problematic owing to dependence on apo(a) size; however, commercial assays that can measure Lp(a) independently and separate from apo(a) size are available now in numerous reference laboratories. [3, 9]

Several prospective studies have shown that Lp(a) predicts cardiovascular risk in a nonlinear fashion, such that the increase in risk is quite small until the highest levels (top 5-10%) of Lp(a) are reached. [3, 4]

Data regarding the use of Lp(a) as a biomarker in certain high-risk groups, such as those with chronic kidney disease or known coronary artery disease, remain controversial. [3]

The observation that extremely high levels of Lp(a) seem to be almost entirely limited to patients with concomitantly high levels of LDL cholesterol brings into question the use of Lp(a) as an independent marker of increased cardiovascular risk and highlights the limitations presented by interactions with LDL cholesterol. [3]

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