Introduction In the Netherlands, the total number of yearly measured lipid profiles exceeds 500,000. While lipid values are strongly affected by age and sex, until recently, no up-to-date age- and sex-specific lipid reference values were available. We describe the translation of big-cohort lipid data into accessible reference values, which can be easily incorporated in daily clinical practice.
Methods Lipid values (total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, HDL cholesterol and triglycerides) from all healthy adults and children in the LifeLines cohort were used to generate age- and sex-specific percentiles. A combination of RStudio, Cascading Style Sheets and HyperText Markup Language was used to interactively display the percentiles in a responsive web layout.
Results After exclusion of subjects reporting cardiovascular disease or lipid-lowering therapy at baseline, 141,611 subjects were included. On the website, input fields were created for age, sex and all main plasma lipids. Upon input of these values, corresponding percentiles are calculated, and output is displayed in a table and an interactive graph for each lipid. The website has been made available in both Dutch and English and can be accessed at .
Conclusion We constructed the first searchable, national lipid reference value tool with graphical display in the Netherlands to use in screening for dyslipidaemias and to reduce the underuse of lipid-lowering therapy in Dutch primary prevention. This study illustrates that data collected in big-cohort studies can be made easily accessible with modern digital techniques and preludes the digital health revolution yet to come.
- Reference values