When there’s too much cholesterol in your bloodstream, it can build up inside the arteries that feed your heart, brain and other organs. Over time, it can clog them and prevent enough blood from flowing to the heart, causing a heart attack or stroke.
What is high cholesterol?
Cholesterol is a waxy type of fat found all through your body, including your blood. It’s made by your liver, but the foods you eat also contain cholesterol. While we all need a certain amount of cholesterol for our bodies to function normally, having too much cholesterol in your bloodstream can cause health problems.
There aren’t any symptoms that let you know whether or not you have high cholesterol. Only a cholesterol test known as a lipid panel can measure the amount of cholesterol in your bloodstream. But if you have high cholesterol, several factors can lead to a greater risk of heart disease, including:
- An extremely high LDL (>190) or triglyceride level (>250) suggesting a genetic cholesterol disorder
- A family history of heart attacks or strokes in members younger than 55.
- Diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, smoking
- A previous history of heart attack or stroke, or peripheral arterial disease with high cholesterol or triglyceride levels.
- Fatty liver disease and need help managing cholesterol.
Treating high cholesterol at AHN: Why choose us?
We offer comprehensive testing and treatment options in one location at the AHN Lipid Clinic. We have an experienced team including cardiovascular experts, dietitians, and exercise physiologists dedicated to helping you manage your cholesterol.
How we diagnose
You’ll have a blood test known as a lipid panel to measure the amount of cholesterol in your bloodstream, including:
- Total cholesterol, which measures the overall level of cholesterol.
- LDL (bad cholesterol), which is the main source blockage.
- HDL (good cholesterol), which can help get rid of excess cholesterol.
- Triglycerides, another type of fat.
- Specialized testing for Genetic cholesterol abnormalities including elevated Lipoprotein (a)
- Cascade screening in family members among those with suspected familial cholesterol disorders
- Genetic testing using buccal swab in those with suspected genetic cholesterol abnormalities.
How we treat
Our team of specialists help manage your cholesterol levels and significantly reduce the long-term risk of heart disease and stroke with medications and supporting healthier lifestyles.
Call (412) DOCTORS (412) 362-8677 or request an appointment to have your cholesterol checked or manage your high cholesterol.