Cholesterol and Lipid Profile Consultation

Lipids are an essential part of your body, and cholesterol is the main lipid. Lipids are fatty compounds that help your body to transmit nerve impulses, regulate hormones, protect organs, and store body fat that you will need for energy. Your body processes and stores lipids from fats in your diet, and while a certain amount of lipids are needed for a healthy body, consuming an excessive amount will result in conditions such as coronary artery disease (which can lead to heart attack or stroke), high blood pressure (hypertension) and a hardening of the arteries (arteriosclerosis).

Cholesterol is the best known lipid, but they are not the same thing as cholesterol is part lipid, part protein.

What is cholesterol?

Cholesterol is a blood fat that is generated in the liver. It has three functions, forming a protective membrane around your cells, in the production of steroid hormones and vitamin D to benefit bones, teeth and muscles, and to make bile to help digest fats.

What are the different types of cholesterol?

Cholesterol is transported through the blood in lipoproteins, the three main types of which are high-density lipoprotein (HDL), low-density lipoprotein (LDL) and triglycerides.

HDL – HDL is good blood cholesterol that can protect you from strokes and heart disease. It moves cholesterol around your body, to and from your liver, where excess cholesterol is broken down. However, it’s important to know that your liver can only break down a certain amount of cholesterol – HDL only carries a maximum of a third of your blood cholesterol.

LDL – LDL is bad cholesterol. LDL also moves cholesterol around your body, but if there is too much, it will deposit fatty build ups which narrow your arteries and cause arteriosclerosis.

Triglycerides are the fats created by converting food and these can also cause arterial narrowing.

Importance of Cholesterol Testing

Cholesterol testing is an important part of health monitoring. If you have higher levels of HDL, LDL and triglycerides than are considered healthy, you are at greater risk of developing health problems such as heart disease or strokes. By regularly testing your lipid profile, you will be alerted to higher cholesterol levels enabling you to make lifestyle changes or begin preventative treatments.

Healthy levels of cholesterol

Your doctor will discuss your lipid profile/cholesterol test results with you in detail, but as a general rule of thumb, healthy levels are:

HDL cholesterol – 0.9 mmol/L or higher
LDL cholesterol – less than 3 mmol/L
Triglyceride – less than 2.3 mmol/L

What is involved in cholesterol testing?

To test your cholesterol levels and lipid profile, we will need to take a small amount of blood from your arm. You do not need a referral to get a blood test, simply make an appointment with your most convenient Same Day Doctor clinic.

The blood sample will then be sent to a laboratory for testing. The results will be available the following day, or sometimes the same day, and you can opt for a phone consultation or face-to-face appointment to discuss them.

Benefits of private cholesterol testing

There are many advantages of opting to pay for private cholesterol testing and lipid profiling:

  • You can self-refer which means you will not need to get a referral from your GP.
  • It is quick and easy to book an appointment at a time that suits you – and SameDayDoctor usually has walk-in availability.
  • You will get the results quickly and there may be circumstances where you get them the same day.
  • Your doctor will take time to discuss the results with you

Cost of private cholesterol testing

The cost of your cholesterol testing and consultation at SameDayDoctor is currently £200.

Why choose SameDayDoctor for your cholesterol test?

SameDayDoctor was established 20 years ago to provide high quality private medical care at an affordable price. We have clinics in London and Manchester that operate on a 7 day week, enabling you to access medical services at a time that suits you. We have access to a range of medical services via our partner clinics, including cholesterol testing and lipid profiling as well as a range of comprehensive blood tests.

Click here for more information about our Manchester and Central London clinic locations
Click here to book your Cholesterol and Lipid Profile Consultation

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to fast before a cholesterol test?

It used to be thought that everyone had to fast for 9-12 hours before having blood drawn for a cholesterol test in order to get more accurate results. Now we know this isn’t necessarily the case, and whether or not a person has fasted doesn’t make much difference to the results, but fasting is preferable. However, if you are having a full lipid profile, including cholesterol, we will advise you to fast beforehand. If you are unsure whether or not you need to fast, contact us for advice.

Can I take my medication before the test?

There are medications that will affect the results of a cholesterol test, meaning you may be asked by your doctor not to take that particular medication before your cholesterol test. If you are unsure, contact us for advice. Statin or other cholesterol lowering medication should be taken.

How often should I get my cholesterol checked?

Healthy adults should get their cholesterol levels checked every 4-6 years; more often if you or someone in your family has a history of high cholesterol, heart disease or diabetes.

What lifestyle changes can help improve cholesterol levels?

There are many actions you can take to reduce your cholesterol levels, including diet – reducing fatty food in your diet, eating more vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds, brown rice, and wholegrain breads and pastas. Drinking less alcohol, with several drink-free days a week, and stopping smoking will also improve your health. And make sure you exercise regularly – at least two and a half hours a week such as swimming, cycling and walking.

What are the potential risks or side effects of cholesterol-lowering medications?

If you need medication to help you lower your cholesterol levels, you will be prescribed statins. While most people will not have any problems, common side effects are muscle pain, digestive problems, tiredness, dizziness, nausea, and difficulty sleeping. Less common side effects include sickness, memory problems, hair loss, inflammation of the liver and/or pancreas, skin problems, and sexual problems. If you need to be prescribed statins, your doctor will discuss the potential risks and side effects with you.

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