Interpreting Cholesterol Readings

Interpreting cholesterol readings might be a little difficult to the common man. A comprehensive lists of tests and the desired levels have been provided in this article to help in understanding ones own condition.

Cholesterol is a wax-like substance present in the cell membranes of our body. Small amounts of cholesterol are essential for normal functioning of our body. The excess gets accumulated in our arteries causing atherosclerosis (clogging of arteries) ; a No.1 cause of heart attacks. The high levels of cholesterol do not present any external symptoms. Hence, a cholesterol test is requested by the doctor to decide on the line of therapy.

Lipid Profile Test:

A set of blood tests commonly called the lipid (fat) profile is recommended, which reveals the total cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the body. The following fats are separated using a centrifuge:

  • Total cholesterol (the total amount of cholesterol in your blood)
  • HDL (high density lipoprotein)
  • LDL (low density lipoprotein)
  • Triglycerides

Result Interpretation For Lipid Profile Test:

The Total Cholesterol Values ((HDL + LDL):

  • Desirable levels: less than 200 mg/dL (milligrams per deciliter)
  • Borderline levels: 200 to 239 mg/dL
  • High risk levels: 240 mg/dL and higher

The HDL Values:

  • Desirable levels: greater than 60 mg/dL
  • Acceptable levels: 40 a�� 60 mg/dL
  • High risk levels: less than 40 mg/dL

The LDL Values:

  • Desirable level: lesser than 100 mg/dL
  • Borderline levels: 100 a�� 159 mg/dL
  • High risk levels: greater than 160 mg/dL

The Triglycerides Values:

  • Desirable levels: lesser than 150 mg/dL
  • Borderline levels: 150 a�� 499 mg/dL
  • High risk levels: greater than 500 mg/dL

Compare your lipid profile values with the above levels and determine the category under which your values fall. You will have a clear picture where you stand. Consult your physician for further details to see if any treatment is required

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