Management of familial hypercholesterolemia in pregnancy

Dorothy F. Graham, Frederick J. Raal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


PURPOSE OF REVIEW: To highlight quandaries and review options for the management of familial hypercholesterolemia (FH) during pregnancy. RECENT FINDINGS: Women with FH face barriers to effective care and consequently face significant disease related long term morbidity and mortality.Pregnancy includes major maternal physiological changes resulting in exacerbation of maternal hypercholesterolemia compounded by the current practice of cessation or reduction in the dose of lipid-lowering therapy during pregnancy and lactation that may impact short and long term cardiac morbidity and mortality. Although lipoprotein apheresis is the treatment of choice for high- risk FH patients, reassuring safety evidence for the use of statins during pregnancy is mounting rapidly. However, it will be some time before subtle effects on the development of the offspring can be definitively excluded. Women with homozygous FH or with an established atherosclerotic vessel or aortic disease should be offered therapy with statins during pregnancy if lipoprotein apheresis is not readily available. Pregnancy outcomes tend to be favourable in women with FH. We have reviewed the currently available evidence regarding the risks and benefits of treatment options for FH during pregnancy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)370-377
Number of pages8
JournalCurrent Opinion in Lipidology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2021


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