WARREN S. BROWNER, M.D., M.P.H.
To the editor: Taylor and colleagues' (1) model of the effect of cholesterol reduction on life expectancy may be flawed, as examination of their Figure 1 suggests. How can following a dietary program to reduce serum cholesterol levels be more effective if started at age 40 (a benefit of about 12 mos in a high-risk woman with a serum cholesterol level of 300 mg/dL) than if started at age 20 (a benefit of only 6 mos)? This would only be possible if the diet actually reduced life expectancy between the ages of 20 and 40. The authors' explanation that adjusting
BROWNER WS. Cholesterol and Mortality: Assumptions, Possible Errors. Ann Intern Med. ;107:420–421. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-107-2-420
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1987;107(3):420-421.
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