Background-The 2013 American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association cholesterol guidelines recommend highintensity statins for patients after myocardial infarction (MI) rather than treating to a low-density lipoprotein cholesterol goal, as the previous ATP III (Adult Treatment Panel third report) guidelines had advised. Methods and Results-To evaluate the frequency of postdischarge lipid testing and high-intensity statin use among MI patients discharged on a statin during the ATP III guidelines era, we linked ACTION (Acute Coronary Treatment and Intervention Outcomes Network) Registry data to Medicare claims for 11 046 MI patients aged ≥65 years who were discharged alive on a statin from 347 hospitals (2007-2009). Multivariable regression was used to evaluate the association between lipid testing and 1-year high-intensity statin use. Only 21% of MI patients were discharged on a high-intensity statin. By 90 days after MI, 44% of patients discharged on a statin underwent lipid testing (43% on low- or moderate-intensity statins and 49% on high-intensity statins; P=0.001). Follow-up lipid testing rates were 47% among patients with in-hospital low-density lipoprotein cholesterol ≥100 mg/dL and 47% among newly prescribed statin recipients. By 1 year, only 14% of patients were on high-intensity statins. Only 4% of patients discharged on low- or moderate-dose statin were uptitrated to high intensity; postdischarge lipid testing was associated with a slightly higher likelihood of high-intensity statin use by 1 year (5.4% versus 2.9%, adjusted odds ratio: 1.92; 95% confidence interval, 1.52-2.41). Conclusions-Previous guidelines recommended low-density lipoprotein cholesterol goal-directed statin therapy, but lipid testing and high-intensity statin use were infrequent after MI. The American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association guidelines may promote more intensive cardiovascular risk reduction by eliminating treatment dependence on lipid testing.
- Lipid testing
- Myocardial infarction
- Statin dosing
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine