Lipid Profile Test
Lipid profile Test is done to assess the risk of cardiovascular diseases and also to monitor the cholesterol level in our blood. People with high cholesterol level should go for lipid profile test in regular intervals, whereas anyone above the 35 years of age with high risk of cardiovascular diseases should go for lipid profile test (cholesterol profile) test at least once in a year. You are supposed to fast for 9-12 hours before the blood samples collected for Lipid Profile test (Cholesterol Profile) test.
A lipid profile Test means
Alipid profile Test means a set of test to measure the most important lipids that are cholesterol and triglycerides. A lipid profile test is classified by their density of VLDL (very-low-density-lipoproteins), LDL (low-density-lipoproteins), and HDL (high-density-lipoproteins).
We need to maintain a healthy level of lipids in our body to stay healthy and avoid Cardiovascular diseases. Eating food that is rich in saturated fat and trans fat or having a family history of high cholesterol level increases the level of Cholesterol in our blood. The extra cholesterol deposited in the wall of the blood vessels eventually blocks the circulation of blood.
The lipid profile test is used as part of a cardiac risk assessment to help identify an individual’s risk of heart disease and to help make decisions about suitable treatment if there is a borderline or high risk.
The results of the lipid profile test are considered along with other risk factors of heart disease such as Lifestyle, Family Health history of Heart attack before the age of 50, family history of elevated cholesterol level, obesity etc. To develop a plan of treatment and follow-up. Depending on the Lipid Profile numbers and other risk factors, treatment options were decoded which might involve lifestyle changes such as exercise and diet or medications for lowering lipid.
A lipid profile test typically includes
- Total cholesterol — A lipid Profile test to measure cholesterol in all the lipoprotein particles.
- HDL-C (High-density lipoprotein cholesterol) — also known as “good cholesterol” as it removes excess cholesterol and carries it to the liver for ejection.
- LDL-C (Low-density lipoprotein cholesterol) — this is also known as “bad cholesterol” as it deposits excessive cholesterol in walls of blood vessels, which can contribute to thickening of arteries. Usually, the amount of LDL-C is calculated using the results obtained for total cholesterol, triglycerides, and HDL-C.
- Triglycerides —A lipid profile test to measure triglycerides in all the lipoprotein particles; mostly in very low-density lipoproteins (VLDL).
- VLDL-C (Very low-density lipoprotein cholesterol) — formula for calculating VLDL-C is based on the typical composition of VLDL particles & calculated from triglycerides/5.
- Cholesterol/HDL ratio — Ratio (calculated) of total cholesterol to HDL-C.
You should go for a lipid profile test once every four to six years even if you are a healthy adult with no other risk factors for cardio vascular diseases , Initial screening may be only test for total cholesterol and not a full lipid profile test. However, if the cholesterol test result is high, you may need to go for a lipid profile test.
If other risk factors are present or if previous testing result detected high cholesterol level in the past, a periodic testing with a full lipid profile test is recommended.
Risk factors other than high LDL Cholesterol include
- Being physically inactive
- Being overweight or obese
- Cigarette smoking
- Unhealthy diet
- Age (if you are 45 years old male or older or a female 50-55 years or older)
- Hypertension ( if your blood pressure is 140/90 or higher or taking high blood pressure medications)
- Family history of heart disease (heart disease in a male first degree relative under age 55 or a female first degree relative under age 65)
- Pre-existing heart disease or had a heart attack
- Diabetes or prediabetes
- Optimal: < 100 mg/dL (2.59 mmol/L); for those with known disease (ASCVD or diabetes), < 70 mg/dL (1.81 mmol/L) is optimal
- Near/above optimal: 100-129 mg/dL (2.59-3.34 mmol/L)
- Borderline(threshold) high: 130 to 159 mg/dL (3.37-4.12 mmol/L)
- High: 160 to 189 mg/dL (4.15 to 4.90 mmol/L)
- Very high: >190 mg/dL (4.90 mmol/L)
- Desirable: less than 200 mg/dL (5.18 mmol/L)
- Borderline (threshold high): 200 to 239 mg/dL (5.18 – 6.18 mmol/L)
- High: 240 mg/dL (6.22 mmol/L) or higher.
- Low level, increased risk: < 40 mg/dL (1.0 mmol/L) for men and < 50 mg/dL (1.3 mmol/L) for women
- Average level, average risk: from 40 to 50 mg/dL (1.0 to 1.3 mmol/L) for men and between 50 to 59 mg/dl (1.3 to 1.5 mmol/L) for women
- High level, less than average risk: 60 mg/dL (1.55 mmol/L) or higher for both men and women
- Desirable: < 150 mg/dL (1.70 mmol/L)
- Borderline (Threshold) high: 150 to 199 mg/dL(1.7 to 2.2 mmol/L)
- High: 200 -499 mg/dL (2.3 -5.6 mmol/L)
- Very high: Greater than 500 mg/dL (5.6 mmol/L)
If you are at a higher risk for Cardiovascular diseases or you already have high cholesterol, or you are under cholesterol-lowering medication get your Lipid profile test done at regular intervals or as instructed by your GP.
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