Authors: R. Ceska, T. Freiberger, M. Vaclova, T. Aleksicova,
L. Votavova, M. Vrablik
This article describes the evolution of our understanding of familial hypercholesterolemia (FH) in the Central, Eastern, and Southern Europe (CESE) region, and the dissemination of this understanding to other countries. Using the ScreenPro FH project as an example, we would like to illustrate the progression from national objectives, to regional networking and, finally, to international collaboration via the Familial Hypercholesterolemia Studies Collaboration (FHSC) project under the leadership of the European Atherosclerosis Society (EAS). It is essential to improve our ability to diagnose FH. In this regard, the EAS and its FHSC project must be commended for their educational and organizational activities which, above all, are dedicated to the creation of a global FH patient registry. In the CESE region, FH diagnostics and treatment situation are markedly different than in Western Europe or North America. Since the Czech MedPed project (Make Early Diagnoses to Prevent Early Deaths in Medical Pedigrees) has been so successful (with results not only comparable to, but, for some parameters, even surpassing the results of many Western countries) we decided to apply the Czech experience to the CESE region. Thus, the ScreenPro FH project was created. The aim of ScreenPro FH is to create a specialist network in the CESE region. The primary objective of the ScreenPro FH project was to dramatically reduce the number of premature deaths due to clinical complications of atherosclerosis in FH patients. At present, ScreenPro FH comprises 18 member countries with a total population of 500,000,000; which, in terms of the FH population, represents 1-2 million patients.
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