How to Diagnose

There are a few different ways that doctors can diagnose cholesterol. The most common way is to do a blood test. This will show your doctor your total cholesterol level, as well as your levels of LDL and HDL cholesterol.

Your doctor may also recommend a heart health assessment. This assesses your risk of developing heart disease. It includes questions about your family history, lifestyle and medical history. Your doctor may also recommend other tests, such as an electrocardiogram (ECG) or a stress test. These tests can help to assess your risk of heart disease.

What is cholesterol?

Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance that is found in the cells of the body. Cholesterol is necessary for the body to function properly. However, too much cholesterol can be harmful. High cholesterol can lead to heart disease, stroke, and other health problems.

There are two types of cholesterol: LDL cholesterol and HDL cholesterol. LDL cholesterol is sometimes called “bad” cholesterol because it can build up on the walls of arteries and form plaque. This can block blood flow and increase your risk of heart disease. HDL cholesterol is sometimes called “good” cholesterol because it helps to remove LDL cholesterol from the arteries.

Complications of high cholesterol

If you have high cholesterol, your doctor will likely recommend lifestyle changes and medication. Lifestyle changes include eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, and quitting smoking. Medications that can lower cholesterol include statins and fibrates. If these treatments do not work, your doctor may recommend other medications, such as niacin or bile acid sequestrants.

If you have symptoms of heart disease, such as chest pain or shortness of breath, your doctor will likely recommend further testing, such as a coronary angiogram. This test can help to assess whether you have blockages in your coronary arteries.

Your doctor will also continue to monitor your cholesterol levels with blood tests. It is important to keep your cholesterol under control to reduce your risk of heart disease.

Main causes of Cholesterol

-Diet: Eating foods that are high in saturated fat and trans fat can raise your cholesterol levels.

-Weight: Being overweight or obese can increase your cholesterol levels.

-Age: Cholesterol levels typically increase as you get older.

-Family history: If you have a family member with high cholesterol, you may be more likely to have high cholesterol.

-Certain medical conditions: Some medical conditions, such as diabetes, can increase your cholesterol levels.