Cholesterol and other lipid disorders put you at risk for serious health problems such as cardiovascular disease, strokes and heart attacks. Managing blood lipid levels is important to your overall health. There are no symptoms for high cholesterol but there are factors that contribute to it, including diet, obesity, heredity and lifestyle.
A blood test shows if you have high cholesterol. A simple cholesterol test can measure total cholesterol and HDL. You can eat before this test. A lipoprotein analysis is a more thorough test that measures your total cholesterol plus your LDL, HDL, and triglyceride levels. It is called a fasting test because you don't eat for 12 hours before the test.
Your total cholesterol level is important. But your levels of LDL, HDL, and triglycerides also help us decide if you need treatment.
Treating cholesterol disorders requires a change in diet and lifestyle and may require medication to help manage it. The first line of treatment for abnormal cholesterol is usually to adopt a diet low in saturated and trans fats, and high in fruits and vegetables, nuts, and seeds and to increase exercise. For most, these changes alone are not enough to lower blood cholesterol levels. These people may need medication, in addition to making lifestyle changes, to bring their cholesterol down to a safe level. Dr. Oppenheimer will work with you to determine the proper medications and dosages.
For more specific cholesterol disorder treatment information, schedule a consultation with Dr. Oppenheimer to determine your needs.