Do You Need to Fast Before a Cholesterol Test?

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Fasting Blood Work

Cholesterol and fasting test

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High cholesterol usually has no symptoms. If you get test anxiety, take it easy. It can be deadly! If you do, you can take action to help avoid a much bigger problem in the future. This content was last reviewed April My Cholesterol Guide Check. How Statins Work Medication Tracker Personal Stories Recipes Subscribe to Heart Insight magazine and monthly e-newsletter Our digital magazine delivers helpful articles and the latest news on keeping your heart healthy.

Use this link for more information on our content editorial process. Fasting means not having food, beverages and medications. The period of fasting before a cholesterol test is usually nine to 12 hours. In the test, a small sample of blood will be taken from your arm or finger.

If other blood tests are also needed, all cholesterol and fasting test samples are usually taken at once. Any discomfort is minor. To determine how your cholesterol levels affect your risk of heart disease, your doctor will also consider other risk factorscholesterol and fasting test, some of which include age, sex, family history, smoking, diabetes and high blood pressure. How often should cholesterol be checked? The American Heart Association recommends that all adults age 20 or older have their cholesterol and other traditional risk factors checked every four to six years.

After that, people should work with their diabetes and history providers to cholesterol and fasting test their risk for cardiovascular disease and stroke.

People who have cardiovascular disease or are at higher risk of it may need their cholesterol and other risk factors assessed more often. Your healthcare provider will explain what your results mean. If needed, he or she will also discuss appropriate treatment cholesterol and fasting test based on your cardiovascular risk and overall health. Where should cholesterol be checked?

Other risk factors, such as your age, cholesterol and fasting test, sex, family history, smoking history, diabetes and blood pressure, must be considered when interpreting your results. Your primary care doctor is most likely to have all that information. Once you know your results, you can see where you stand. Your doctor can recommend a treatment and prevention plan, as well as follow-up testing, if you need it.

If your cholesterol is checked at a public screening, HDL cholesterol and total cholesterol should be measured. Getting your blood cholesterol, blood pressure, body mass index and fasting blood sugar measured regularly should be part of your overall medical care plan.

Your cholesterol level is just part of your overall cardiovascular risk profile. That means your other risk factors must be considered, cholesterol and fasting test, too. Be sure to share the screening results with your healthcare professional.

This will ensure that your tests can be properly interpreted and an appropriate treatment and prevention plan developed, if you need one. This is particularly important for people with a family history of heart disease, high blood pressure or stroke.

Several kinds are on the market, cholesterol and fasting test. Some measure only total cholesterol. Others measure total cholesterol and HDL cholesterol. If you might benefit from one, talk to your doctor about which kind might be best for you.

Subscribe to Heart Insight magazine and monthly e-newsletter Our digital magazine delivers helpful articles and the latest news on keeping your heart healthy. My Cholesterol Guide Do you have questions about cholesterol?

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Cholesterol and fasting test