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Abstract: High cholesterol and MGD

Association of dyslipidemia in moderate to severe meibomian gland dysfunction.
Am J Ophthalmol. 2010 Sep;150(3):371-375.e1. Epub 2010 Jul 8.
Dao AH, Spindle JD, Harp BA, Jacob A, Chuang AZ, Yee RW.
University of Texas Medical School at Houston, Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, Houston, TX 77030, USA.

PURPOSE: To determine whether meibomian gland disease, a major contributor to dry eye syndrome, is associated with dyslipidemia.

DESIGN: Retrospective case-control study.

METHODS: setting: Clinical practice. patient or study population: Sixty-six patients from January 2008 to July 2009 with moderate to severe meibomian gland disease whose serum lipid levels were obtained. We excluded patients who were already taking lipid-altering substances and patients with rheumatologic disease. We analyzed several parameters in prevalence of dyslipidemia (total cholesterol > 200 mg/dL, low-density lipoprotein [LDL] > 130 mg/dL, high-density lipoprotein [HDL] < 40 mg/dL, and triglycerides >150 mg/dL) in MGD patients and compared these patients to the general population as reported by data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES). main outcome measure: The prevalence of dyslipidemia (elevated total cholesterol, elevated LDL, decreased HDL, or elevated triglycerides) in patients with moderate to severe MGD.

RESULTS: Patients with moderate to severe MGD had a higher incidence of dyslipidemia with respect to elevated total cholesterol (>200 mg/dL), 67.4% to 45.1% (P = .0012) when compared to population controls. There was a smaller number of MGD patients with low HDL (HDL < 40 mg/dL), 6.5%, when compared to controls, 15.7% (P = .045). The incidence of increased LDL was not statistically significant (P = .184). There was a statistically smaller number of MGD patients with high triglycerides (TG > 150 mg/dL), 15.2%, when compared to controls, 33.1% (P = .0049).

CONCLUSIONS: Patients with moderate to severe MGD have a higher incidence of dyslipidemia with respect to elevated total cholesterol than the general population. Surprisingly, the component of total cholesterol that contributed most to this increase in total cholesterol came from elevated serum HDL levels. To our knowledge, elevated HDL has not been associated with any pathologic state. Patients with MGD had a statistically significant lower incidence of hypoalphalipoproteinemia (low HDL) than the general population. Patients with MGD also had a lower incidence of hypertriglyceridemia than the general population.