How to Diagnose High Cholesterol

If you think you might have high cholesterol and want to go in for a diagnosis, what can you expect? High cholesterol diagnosis is primarily done through blood tests. Just a physical exam can’t tell the doctor much about your cholesterol levels.
What Is a Lipid Profile?
A lipid profile is a blood test specifically catered for testing for high cholesterol levels.
In order to make sure you get an accurate reading, your doctor will require that you skip meals for 12 hours before you take the test.
This is because certain levels in your blood can fluctuate whenever you eat food. In order to get a good baseline reading, they need you to not eat for a period of time.
They then take your blood using a needle. Much like taking blood for any other kind of test, your blood vessels will be constricted using a band to make them stand out. Blood will then be extracted and sent to the lab for testing and diagnosis.
The Different Parts of Your Lipid Profiles
There are a few numbers your doctor is going to come back with.
The first is your LDL cholesterol levels. LDL stands for “low density lipoproteins.” Your LDL levels are the most important numbers you want to pay attention to if you’re worried about high cholesterol.
Another important number to pay attention to is your HDL or “high density lipoprotein” levels. HDL is generally considered the “good” cholesterol that you want in your blood stream to help your cells function better.
The two other numbers your doctor will come back with are your triglyceride levels and your total cholesterol levels. Your triglycerides are also considered bad lipids. Your total cholesterol is the total of your HDL and LDL levels.
By: Dr. Sandra Miranda, ND

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