The effects of beta adrenoceptor blockade with propranolol or pindolol on serum total cholesterol, low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL), high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL), and its subfractions HDL2 and HDL3, serum triglyceride, and Intralipid clearance were studied in 17 normolipidaemic, non-diabetic patients with hypertension or angina pectoris. Both pindolol and propranolol had similar effects on fasting serum total and lipoprotein cholesterol concentrations. HDL2 cholesterol concentrations were reduced by 9 +/- 29% and HDL3 cholesterol increased by 11 +/- 16%, but there were no significant changes in total or LDL cholesterol in the combined groups after six weeks' treatment. After 12 weeks' treatment total cholesterol concentrations were reduced by 7 +/- 10% mainly owing to a reduction in the LDL fraction of 9 +/- 15%. Concentrations of HDL2 remained low, 8% less than control values. Serum triglyceride concentrations were increased by both drugs at six weeks but had returned to base values in the pindolol group by the twelfth week. Pindolol, but not propranolol, enhanced the rate of clearance of intravenous Intralipid.
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