Saturday, 14 April 2012

Should you be tested for cholesterol? How often?



Canadian guidelines for the most recent support of the recommended cholesterol cholesterol test in the following cases:
  •     men 40 years or more;
  •     women 50 years or more;
  •     postmenopausal women (any age);
  •     people with diabetes;
  •     obese (BMI [body mass index] of 27 or more);
  •     smokers;
  •     people with hypertension;
  •     People with strong family history, that is to say which members of the immediate family (such as parents, siblings) had heart disease at a relatively young age (under 60);
  •     people with physical signs of high cholesterol, such as yellow lesions under the skin or a grayish circle around the cornea (transparent layer that covers the eye);
  •     patients with atherosclerosis (narrowing and hardening of the arteries);
  •     men with symptoms of erectile dysfunction (difficulty getting or maintaining an erection);
  •     People with chronic kidney disease;
  •     people infected with HIV receiving antiretroviral therapy (HAART);
  •     people with lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis or psoriasis;
  •     children with a family history of hypercholesterolemia.
For persons belonging to groups above, it appears advisable to cholesterol testing at intervals of 1 to 3 years, or sooner, if values ​​are abnormal or if treatment is started. Even if you're not part of these groups, your doctor may choose to measure your cholesterol levels it considers appropriate.

Your doctor will schedule for the determination of cholesterol depending on your age, your general health and whether or not you take a cholesterol (medication to reduce your cholesterol).

Your doctor will check your cholesterol usually 6 weeks after initiation of treatment with a new drug or after a change in dose. Once the appropriate dose is reached, the tests will be every 6 to 12 months.

The cholesterol test will help you and your doctor to estimate your risk of heart disease, to determine your expectations for treatment and to evaluate the success of it. Ask your doctor if your cholesterol levels should be measured and, if so, what should your cholesterol targets.