Cholesterol

Advanced Cholesterol Lab Testing and health information

Do you know how much cholesterol you have and how it affects your health?
These 10 blood tests will help you understand and manage your cholesterol levels. 

High cholesterol levels are a key cause of heart disease. It can cause atherosclerosis or the stiffening of arteries due to plaque formation in blood vessels. Coronary artery disease, stroke, and peripheral vascular disease can all be caused by elevated cholesterol levels. High cholesterol, if left untreated, may be deadly! The good news is that knowing your numbers and reacting when necessary can help you lower your risk of developing these conditions. 

We provide advanced blood tests for the early diagnosis of heart disease and other cardiovascular problems at Ulta Lab Tests. We also provide information about the most current lab testing to make informed health decisions. With our free guide, you can learn about 10 important lab tests for high cholesterol testing, including LDL-C (low-density lipoprotein), HDL-C (high-density lipoprotein), and triglycerides. We explain how these tests interact so that you can figure out what they mean for your health. 

Other factors that contribute to heart disease include family history, age, gender, race/ethnicity, and lifestyle choices such as smoking or not smoking, food quality, and exercise. You'll be able to take control of your health before it becomes too late if you take advantage of this knowledge. 

Click the link below to read the following articles on advanced cholesterol blood testing. 

You don’t have to live with elevated cholesterol levels or risk developing serious health problems in the future. Our advanced testing options are designed to help people like yourself get peace of mind by knowing if they need treatment for their condition or not.

Choose from the cardiovascular lab tests and panels offered below to take control of your health today.


Name Matches

Measuring Lipid Subclasses using Ion Mobility

The way most doctors test for heart disease is with a lipid panel. It helps detect what HDL (good) and LDL (bad) cholesterol are, so hopefully you can reduce your risk of a possible cardiac event such as a heart attack. Nearly half of all heart attack patients were found to have no prior risk which would indicate they were heading toward an attack.

Quest Diagnostics offers advanced cardiovascular tests that help provide a more accurate and individualized picture of risk. The tests look beyond just HDL and LDL cholesterol to identify undiagnosed (or additional) risk.

These advanced cardiovascular tests, along with your lipid panel, will provide more information that you and your doctor can use to understand your complete cardiovascular health.

Lipid Subclasses as measured by Ion Mobility Technology

Knowing what particles make up your LDL and HDL cholesterol may be important. Ion Mobility Technology provides subclass separation that will allow your healthcare provider to identify your cardiovascular risk over time. Following the change in your lipid profile as you respond to diet, exercise and possible medication to reduce your cardiovascular risk is important. Ion Mobility provides the opportunity to determine if treatment is working and if not, optimize the aggressiveness of therapy to hopefully make a difference that can be seen in the Ion Mobility measurement and graphical representation of your LDL and HDL particles. 

Cardio IQ™ Lipoprotein Fractionation, Ion Mobility 
Cardio IQ™ Lipid Panel
Cardio IQ™ Direct LDL 
Cardio IQ™ Apolipoprotein Evaluation 
Cardio IQ™ Lipoprotein (A)

Apo B

  • Apo B is a direct measurement of the number of lipoprotein particles, including LDL (“bad cholesterol”), IDL, and VLDL
  • A high Apo B number indicates increased risk for heart disease
  • Certain medications, improved eating habits, increased physical activity, and loss of body fat are some ways to
    improve Apo B

Lipoprotein (A) - Lp(a)

  • High levels of Lp(a) are associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke
  • Lp(a) levels may be influenced by genetics. Diet and exercise have limited to no effect on lowering Lp(a); however, certain
    medications can lower levels

Cardio IQ® Apolipoprotein Evaluation - (APOLIPOPROTEIN A1, APOLIPOPROTEIN B and APOLIPOPROTEIN B/A1 RATIO)

  • Apolipoprotein A1 is the primary protein associated with HDL cholesterol. Like HDL cholesterol, increased concentrations are associated with reduced risk of cardiovascular disease. Apolipoprotein B-100 is the primary protein associated with LDL cholesterol and other lipid particles. Like LDL cholesterol, increased concentrations are associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease. The ratio of these two apolipoproteins correlates with risk of cardiovascular disease.

Cardio IQ Advanced Lipid Panel Plus and Inflammation Panel

Measuring Lipid Subclasses using Ion Mobility

The way most doctors test for heart disease is with a lipid panel. It helps detect what HDL (good) and LDL (bad) cholesterol are, so hopefully you can reduce your risk of a possible cardiac event such as a heart attack. Nearly half of all heart attack patients were found to have no prior risk which would indicate they were heading toward an attack.

Quest Diagnostics offers advanced cardiovascular tests that help provide a more accurate and individualized picture of risk. The tests look beyond just HDL and LDL cholesterol to identify undiagnosed (or additional) risk.

These advanced cardiovascular tests, along with your lipid panel, will provide more information that you and your doctor can use to understand your complete cardiovascular health.

Lipid Subclasses as measured by Ion Mobility Technology

Knowing what particles make up your LDL and HDL cholesterol may be important. Ion Mobility Technology provides subclass separation that will allow your healthcare provider to identify your cardiovascular risk over time. Following the change in your lipid profile as you respond to diet, exercise and possible medication to reduce your cardiovascular risk is important. Ion Mobility provides the opportunity to determine if treatment is working and if not, optimize the aggressiveness of therapy to hopefully make a difference that can be seen in the Ion Mobility measurement and graphical representation of your LDL and HDL particles. 

Cardio IQ™ Lipoprotein Fractionation, Ion Mobility 

Cardio IQ™ Lipid Panel

Cardio IQ™ Direct LDL 

Cardio IQ™ Apolipoprotein Evaluation 

Cardio IQ™ Lipoprotein (A)

Apo B

  • Apo B is a direct measurement of the number of lipoprotein particles, including LDL (“bad cholesterol”), IDL, and VLDL
  • A high Apo B number indicates increased risk for heart disease
  • Certain medications, improved eating habits, increased physical activity, and loss of body fat are some ways to
    improve Apo B

Lipoprotein (A) - Lp(a)

  • High levels of Lp(a) are associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke
  • Lp(a) levels may be influenced by genetics. Diet and exercise have limited to no effect on lowering Lp(a); however, certain
    medications can lower levels

Cardio IQ® Apolipoprotein Evaluation - (APOLIPOPROTEIN A1, APOLIPOPROTEIN B and APOLIPOPROTEIN B/A1 RATIO)

  • Apolipoprotein A1 is the primary protein associated with HDL cholesterol. Like HDL cholesterol, increased concentrations are associated with reduced risk of cardiovascular disease. Apolipoprotein B-100 is the primary protein associated with LDL cholesterol and other lipid particles. Like LDL cholesterol, increased concentrations are associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease. The ratio of these two apolipoproteins correlates with risk of cardiovascular disease.

 

Inflammation Panel

 

hs-CRP

  • High levels of C-Reactive Protein (CRP) indicate inflammation due to infection or tissue injury
  • Modestly elevated CRP levels may be associated with increased heart disease risk. If both CRP and Lp-PLA2 levels are
    high, your risk for a heart attack or stroke increases significantly
  • Certain medications and food may have anti-inflammatory benefits

 

Lp-PLA2

  • High levels of Lp-PLA2 can predict risk of a heart attack or stroke
  • When both Lp-PLA2 levels and systolic blood pressure are high, stroke risk increases significantly
  • Certain medications can reduce levels of Lp-PLA2 

  • Apolipoprotein B, Cardio IQ™
  • CARDIO IQ(R) LP PLA2 ACTIVITY
  • hs-CRP, Cardio IQ™
  • Lipid Panel, Cardio IQ™
  • Lipoprotein (a), Cardio IQ™
  • Lipoprotein Fractionation, Ion Mobility, Cardio IQ™

Cardio IQ® ASCVD Risk Panel with Score 

This panel provides the 10-year and lifetime risk of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) using lipid results with anthropomorphic data and family history. 
The ASCVD risk assessment is recommended in the 2013 ACC/AHA Guidelines on the Treatment of Blood Cholesterol to Reduce Atherosclerotic Cardiovascular Risk in Adults.

IMPORTANT: For risk calculations to be performed, the following patient-specific information must be provided and recorded at the time of specimen collection:

  • Age: Years 
  • Gender: M (for male) or F (for female) 
  • Height Feet: Feet 
  • Height Inches: Inches 
  • Weight: lbs 
  • Race-African American: Y (for yes) or N (for no) 
  • Systolic Blood Pressure: mmHg
  • Diastolic Blood Pressure: mmHg
  • Treatment for High B.P.: Y (for yes) or N (for no) 
  • Diabetes Status: Y (for yes) or N (for no)
  • Parental History of Diab: Y (for yes) or N (for no) 
  • Smoking Status: Y (for Yes) or N (for no)

 

 


Cardio IQ® Lipoprotein Subfractionation, Ion Mobility

Clinical Significance

There is a correlation between increased risk of premature heart disease with decreasing size of LDL particles. Ion mobility offers the only direct measurement of lipoprotein particle size and concentration for each lipoprotein from HDL3 to large VLDL.

Includes

HDL Particle Number; LDL Particle Number; Non-HDL Particle Number; HDL, Small; HDL Large; LDL, Very Small-d; LDL, Very Small-c; LDL, Very Small-b; LDL, Very Small-a; LDL Small; LDL Medium; LDL, Large-b; LDL, Large-a; IDL, Small; IDL, Large; VLDL, Small; VLDL, Medium; VLDL, Large; LDL Pattern; LDL Peak Size

Patient Preparation

Fasting preferred

Methodology

Ion Mobility

 


  • Lipid Panel with Ratios - 
    • Total Cholesterol
    • HDL Cholesterol,
    • Triglycerides
    • LDL-Cholesterol (calculated)
    • Cholesterol/HDL Ratio (calculated)
    • LDL/HDL Ratio (calculated)
    • Non-HDL Cholesterol (calculated)
  • Lipoprotein (a)
  • Apolipoprotein B
  • Lipoprotein Fractionation, Ion Mobility, Cardio IQ™ - 
    • LDL Particle Number
    • LDL Small
    • LDL Medium
    • HDL Large
    • LDL Pattern
    • LDL Peak Size

Advanced Cholesterol Panel + Inflammatory Marker

CHOLESTEROL BIOMARKERS

  • Triglycerides 
  • Total Cholesterol
  • HDL Cholesterol
  • LDL Cholesterol 
  • Cholesterol/HDL Ratio 
  • Non- HDL Cholesterol 
  • Apolipoprotein B 
  • LDL Particle Number
  • LDL Peak Size
  • LDL Pattern 
  • HDL Large 
  • LDL Small & Medium 
  • Lipoprotein (a) 

INFLAMMATION BIOMARKERS

  • High sensitivity CRP

QUEST TESTS

  • hs-CRP, Cardio IQ™
  • Lipid Panel, Cardio IQ™
  • Lipoprotein (a), Cardio IQ™
  • Apolipoprotein B, Cardio IQ™ 
  • Lipoprotein Fractionation, Ion Mobility, Cardio IQ™

Advanced Lipid Panel, Cardio IQ

 

Includes

Cardio IQ® Cholesterol, Total; Cardio IQ® HDL Cholesterol; Cardio IQ® Triglycerides; Cardio IQ® Non-HDL and Calculated Components; Cardio IQ® Lipoprotein Fractionation, Ion Mobility; Cardio IQ® Apolipoprotein B; Cardio IQ® Lipoprotein (a)

If Triglyceride is >400 mg/dL, Cardio IQ® Direct LDL will be performed at an additional charge


  • hs-CRP [ 10124 ]
  • Lipid Panel with Ratios [ 19543 ]

  • Apolipoprotein A1 + B [ 7018 ]
  • hs-CRP [ 10124 ]
  • Lipid Panel with Ratios [ 19543 ]
  • Lipoprotein (A) [ 34604 ]
  • Lipoprotein Fractionation, Ion Mobility, Cardio IQ™ [ 91604 ]
  • VLDL Cholesterol [ 319 ]
     

  • Apolipoprotein A1 + B [ 7018 ]
  • Direct LDL [ 8293 ]
  • hs-CRP [ 10124 ]
  • Lipid Panel with Ratios [ 19543 ]
  • Lipoprotein (A) [ 34604 ]
  • Lipoprotein Fractionation, Ion Mobility, Cardio IQ™ [ 91604 ]
  • LP PLA2 ACTIVITY [ 94267 ]
  • VLDL Cholesterol [ 319 ]
     

  • ApoE Genotype, Cardio IQ™ [ 90649 ]
  • Apolipoprotein A1 + B [ 7018 ]
  • Direct LDL [ 8293 ]
  • hs-CRP [ 10124 ]
  • Lipid Panel with Ratios [ 19543 ]
  • Lipoprotein (A) [ 34604 ]
  • Lipoprotein Fractionation, Ion Mobility, Cardio IQ™ [ 91604 ]
  • LP PLA2 ACTIVITY [ 94267 ]
  • VLDL Cholesterol [ 319 ]
     


Description: A Lipid Panel is a blood test that measures your cholesterol levels to evaluate your risk of cardiovascular disease. 

Also Known As: Lipid Profile Test, Lipid Test, Cholesterol Profile Test, Cholesterol Panel Test, Cholesterol Test, Coronary Risk Panel Test, lipid blood test 

Collection Method: Blood Draw 

Specimen Type: Serum 

Test Preparation: Patient should be fasting 9-12 hours prior to collection.

When is a Lipid Panel test ordered?  

A fasting lipid profile should be done about every five years in healthy persons who have no additional risk factors for heart disease. A single total cholesterol test, rather than a complete lipid profile, may be used for initial screening. If the screening cholesterol test result is high, a lipid profile will almost certainly be performed. 

More regular testing with a full lipid profile is indicated if other risk factors are present or if earlier testing revealed a high cholesterol level. 

Other risk factors, in addition to high LDL cholesterol, include: 

  • Smoking 
  • Obesity or being overweight 
  • Unhealthy eating habits 
  • Not getting enough exercise and being physically inactive 
  • Older age 
  • Having hypertension 
  • Premature heart disease in the family 
  • Having experienced a heart attack or having pre-existing heart disease 

Diabetes or pre-diabetes is a condition in which a person has High HDL is a "negative risk factor," and its existence permits one risk factor to be removed from the total. 

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends routine lipid testing for children and young adults. Children and teenagers who are at a higher risk of developing heart disease as adults should be screened with a lipid profile earlier and more frequently. A family history of heart disease or health problems such as diabetes, high blood pressure, or being overweight are some of the risk factors, which are comparable to those in adults. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, high-risk children should be examined with a fasting lipid profile between the ages of 2 and 8. 

A lipid profile can also be done at regular intervals to assess the effectiveness of cholesterol-lowering lifestyle changes like diet and exercise, as well as pharmacological therapy like statins. 

What does a Lipid Panel blood test check for? 

Lipids are a class of fats and fat-like compounds that are essential components of cells and energy sources. The level of certain lipids in the blood is measured by a lipid profile. 

Lipoprotein particles transport two key lipids, cholesterol, and triglycerides, through the bloodstream. Protein, cholesterol, triglyceride, and phospholipid molecules are all present in each particle. High-density lipoproteins, low-density lipoproteins, and very low-density lipoproteins are the three types of particles assessed with a lipid profile. 

It's critical to keep track of and maintain optimal levels of these lipids in order to stay healthy. While the body creates the cholesterol required for normal function, some cholesterol is obtained from the diet. A high amount of cholesterol in the blood can be caused by eating too many foods high in saturated fats and trans fats or having a hereditary tendency. The excess cholesterol may form plaques on the inside walls of blood vessels. Plaques can constrict or block blood channel openings, causing artery hardening and raising the risk of a variety of health problems, including heart disease and stroke. Although the explanation for this is unknown, a high level of triglycerides in the blood is linked to an increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease. 

A lipid profile consists of the following elements: 

  • Cholesterol total 
  • HDL Cholesterol -?commonly referred to as "good cholesterol" since it eliminates excess cholesterol from the body and transports it to the liver for elimination. 
  • LDL Cholesterol -?commonly referred to as "bad cholesterol" because it deposits excess cholesterol in the walls of blood arteries, contributing to atherosclerosis. 
  • Triglycerides 

Lab tests often ordered with a Lipid Panel test:

  • CBC (Blood Count Test) with Smear Review
  • Comprehensive Metabolic Panel
  • Direct LDL
  • VLDL
  • Lp-PLA2
  • Apolipoprotein A1
  • Apolipoprotein B
  • Lipoprotein (a)
  • Lipoprotein Fractionation Ion Mobility (LDL Particle Testing)

Conditions where a Lipid Panel test is recommended:

  • Hypertension
  • Cardiovascular Disease
  • Heart Disease
  • Stroke

Commonly Asked Questions: 

How does my health care provider use a Lipid Panel test? 

The lipid profile is used as part of a cardiac risk assessment to help determine an individual's risk of heart disease and, if there is a borderline or high risk, to help make treatment options. 

Lipids are a class of fats and fat-like compounds that are essential components of cells and energy sources. It's critical to keep track of and maintain optimal levels of these lipids in order to stay healthy. 

To design a therapy and follow-up strategy, the results of the lipid profile are combined with other recognized risk factors for heart disease. Treatment options may include lifestyle changes such as diet and exercise, as well as lipid-lowering drugs such as statins, depending on the results and other risk factors. 

A normal lipid profile test measures the following elements: 

  • Total cholesterol is a test that determines how much cholesterol is present in all lipoprotein particles. 

  • HDL Cholesterol — measures hdl cholesterol in particles, sometimes referred to as "good cholesterol" since it eliminates excess cholesterol and transports it to the liver for elimination. 

  • LDL Cholesterol – estimates the cholesterol in LDL particles; sometimes known as "bad cholesterol" since it deposits excess cholesterol in blood vessel walls, contributing to atherosclerosis. The amount of LDL Cholesterol is usually estimated using the total cholesterol, HDL Cholesterol, and triglycerides readings. 

  • Triglycerides – triglycerides are measured in all lipoprotein particles, with the highest concentration in very-low-density lipoproteins. 

  • As part of the lipid profile, several extra information may be presented. The results of the above-mentioned tests are used to determine these parameters. 

  • VLDL Cholesterol — derived using triglycerides/5; this calculation is based on the typical VLDL particle composition. 

  • Non-HDL Cholesterol - the result of subtracting total cholesterol from HDL Cholesterol. 

  • Cholesterol/HDL ratio — total cholesterol to HDL Cholesterol ratio computed. 

An expanded profile may include the amount and concentration of low-density lipoprotein particles. Rather than assessing the amount of LDL cholesterol, this test counts the number of LDL particles. This figure is thought to more accurately reflect the risk of heart disease in some persons. 

What do my Lipid Panel test results mean? 

Healthy lipid levels, in general, aid in the maintenance of a healthy heart and reduce the risk of heart attack or stroke. A health practitioner would analyze the results of each component of a lipid profile, as well as other risk factors, to assess a person's total risk of coronary heart disease, if therapy is required, and, if so, which treatment will best serve to reduce the person's risk of heart disease. 

The Adult Treatment Panel III of the National Cholesterol Education Program published guidelines for measuring lipid levels and selecting treatment in 2002. The American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association announced updated cholesterol therapy guidelines in 2013 to minimize the risk of cardiovascular disease in adults. These guidelines suggest a different treatment method than the NCEP guidelines. Cholesterol-lowering medications are now chosen based on the 10-year risk of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease and other criteria, rather than on LDL Cholesterol or non-HDL Cholesterol objectives. 

The revised guidelines include an evidence-based risk calculator for ASCVD that may be used to identify people who are most likely to benefit from treatment. It's for adults between the ages of 40 and 79 who don't have a heart condition. The computation takes into account a number of characteristics, including age, gender, race, total cholesterol, HDL Cholesterol, blood pressure, diabetes, and smoking habits. The new guidelines also suggest comparing therapeutic response to LDL Cholesterol baseline readings, with decrease criteria varying depending on the degree of lipid-lowering medication therapy. 

Unhealthy lipid levels, as well as the presence of additional risk factors like age, family history, cigarette smoking, diabetes, and high blood pressure, may indicate that the person being examined needs to be treated. 

The NCEP Adult Treatment Panel III guidelines specify target LDL cholesterol levels based on the findings of lipid testing and these other main risk factors. Individuals with LDL Cholesterol levels over the target limits will be treated, according to the guidelines. 

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, screening youths with risk factors for heart disease with a full, fasting lipid panel is advised. Fasting is not required prior to lipid screening in children who do not have any risk factors. For non-fasting lipid screening, non-high-density lipoprotein cholesterol is the preferred test. Non HDL Cholesterol is computed by subtracting total cholesterol and HDL Cholesterol from total cholesterol and HDL Cholesterol. 

Is there anything else I should know? 

The measurement of triglycerides in people who haven't fasted is gaining popularity. Because most of the day, blood lipid levels reflect post-meal levels rather than fasting levels, a non-fasting sample may be more representative of the "usual" circulating level of triglyceride. However, because it is still unclear how to interpret non-fasting levels for assessing risk, the current recommendations for fasting before lipid tests remain unchanged. 

A fasting lipid profile is usually included in a routine cardiac risk assessment. In addition, research into the utility of additional non-traditional cardiac risk markers, such as Lp-PLA2, is ongoing. A health care provider may use one or more of these markers to help determine a person's risk, but there is no consensus on how to use them and they are not widely available. 

We advise having your results reviewed by a licensed medical healthcare professional for proper interpretation of your results.



Lipid Panel with Direct LDL contains the following tests:

  • Direct LDL 
  • Lipid Panel with Ratios

Description: A Lipid Panel is a blood test that measures your cholesterol levels to evaluate your risk of cardiovascular disease.

Also Known As: Lipid Profile Test, Lipid Test, Cholesterol Profile Test, Cholesterol Panel Test, Cholesterol Test, Coronary Risk Panel Test, lipid blood test, Lipid w/Ratios Test, Cholesterol Ratio test, blood cholesterol Test

Collection Method: Blood Draw

Specimen Type: Serum

Test Preparation: Patient should be fasting 9-12 hours prior to collection.

When is a Lipid Panel with Ratios test ordered?

A fasting lipid profile should be done about every five years in healthy persons who have no additional risk factors for heart disease. A single total cholesterol test, rather than a complete lipid profile, may be used for initial screening. If the screening cholesterol test result is high, a lipid profile will almost certainly be performed.

More regular testing with a full lipid profile is indicated if other risk factors are present or if earlier testing revealed a high cholesterol level.

Other risk factors, in addition to high LDL cholesterol, include:

  • Smoking
  • Obesity or being overweight
  • Unhealthy eating habits
  • Not getting enough exercise and being physically inactive
  • Older age
  • Having hypertension
  • Premature heart disease in the family
  • Having experienced a heart attack or having pre-existing heart disease

Diabetes or pre-diabetes is a condition in which a person has High HDL is a "negative risk factor," and its existence permits one risk factor to be removed from the total.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends routine lipid testing for children and young adults. Children and teenagers who are at a higher risk of developing heart disease as adults should be screened with a lipid profile earlier and more frequently. A family history of heart disease or health problems such as diabetes, high blood pressure, or being overweight are some of the risk factors, which are comparable to those in adults. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, high-risk children should be examined with a fasting lipid profile between the ages of 2 and 8.

A lipid profile can also be done at regular intervals to assess the effectiveness of cholesterol-lowering lifestyle changes like diet and exercise, as well as pharmacological therapy like statins.

What does a Lipid Panel with Ratios blood test check for?

Lipids are a class of fats and fat-like compounds that are essential components of cells and energy sources. The level of certain lipids in the blood is measured by a lipid profile.

Lipoprotein particles transport two key lipids, cholesterol and triglycerides, through the bloodstream. Protein, cholesterol, triglyceride, and phospholipid molecules are all present in each particle. High-density lipoproteins, low-density lipoproteins, and very low-density lipoproteins are the three types of particles assessed with a lipid profile.

It's critical to keep track of and maintain optimal levels of these lipids in order to stay healthy. While the body creates the cholesterol required for normal function, some cholesterol is obtained from the diet. A high amount of cholesterol in the blood can be caused by eating too many foods high in saturated fats and trans fats or having a hereditary tendency. The excess cholesterol may form plaques on the inside walls of blood vessels. Plaques can constrict or block blood channel openings, causing artery hardening and raising the risk of a variety of health problems, including heart disease and stroke. Although the explanation for this is unknown, a high level of triglycerides in the blood is linked to an increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease.

A lipid profile consists of the following elements:

  • Cholesterol total
  • HDL Cholesterol - commonly referred to as "good cholesterol" since it eliminates excess cholesterol from the body and transports it to the liver for elimination.
  • LDL Cholesterol - commonly referred to as "bad cholesterol" because it deposits excess cholesterol in the walls of blood arteries, contributing to atherosclerosis.
  • Triglycerides
  • Ratio of LDL to HDL cholesterol

Lab tests often ordered with a Lipid Panel with Ratios test:

  • CBC (Blood Count Test) with Smear Review
  • Comprehensive Metabolic Panel
  • Direct LDL
  • VLDL
  • Lp-PLA2
  • Apolipoprotein A1
  • Apolipoprotein B
  • Lipoprotein (a)
  • Lipoprotein Fractionation Ion Mobility (LDL Particle Testing)

Conditions where a Lipid Panel with Ratios test is recommended:

  • Hypertension
  • Cardiovascular Disease
  • Heart Disease
  • Stroke

Commonly Asked Questions:

How does my health care provider use a Lipid Panel with Ratios test?

The lipid profile is used as part of a cardiac risk assessment to help determine an individual's risk of heart disease and, if there is a borderline or high risk, to help make treatment options.

Lipids are a class of fats and fat-like compounds that are essential components of cells and energy sources. It's critical to keep track of and maintain optimal levels of these lipids in order to stay healthy.

To design a therapy and follow-up strategy, the results of the lipid profile are combined with other recognized risk factors for heart disease. Treatment options may include lifestyle changes such as diet and exercise, as well as lipid-lowering drugs such as statins, depending on the results and other risk factors.

A normal lipid profile test measures the following elements:

  • Total cholesterol is a test that determines how much cholesterol is present in all lipoprotein particles.
  • HDL Cholesterol — measures hdl cholesterol in particles, sometimes referred to as "good cholesterol" since it eliminates excess cholesterol and transports it to the liver for elimination.
  • LDL Cholesterol – estimates the cholesterol in LDL particles; sometimes known as "bad cholesterol" since it deposits excess cholesterol in blood vessel walls, contributing to atherosclerosis. The amount of LDL Cholesterol is usually estimated using the total cholesterol, HDL Cholesterol, and triglycerides readings.
  • Triglycerides – triglycerides are measured in all lipoprotein particles, with the highest concentration in very-low-density lipoproteins.
  • As part of the lipid profile, several extra information may be presented. The results of the above-mentioned tests are used to determine these parameters.
  • VLDL Cholesterol — derived using triglycerides/5; this calculation is based on the typical VLDL particle composition.
  • Non-HDL Cholesterol - the result of subtracting total cholesterol from HDL Cholesterol.
  • Cholesterol/HDL ratio — total cholesterol to HDL Cholesterol ratio computed.

An expanded profile may include the amount and concentration of low-density lipoprotein particles. Rather than assessing the amount of LDL cholesterol, this test counts the number of LDL particles. This figure is thought to more accurately reflect the risk of heart disease in some persons.

What do my Lipid Panel test results mean?

Healthy lipid levels, in general, aid in the maintenance of a healthy heart and reduce the risk of heart attack or stroke. A health practitioner would analyze the results of each component of a lipid profile, as well as other risk factors, to assess a person's total risk of coronary heart disease, if therapy is required, and, if so, which treatment will best serve to reduce the person's risk of heart disease.

The Adult Treatment Panel III of the National Cholesterol Education Program published guidelines for measuring lipid levels and selecting treatment in 2002. The American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association announced updated cholesterol therapy guidelines in 2013 to minimize the risk of cardiovascular disease in adults. These guidelines suggest a different treatment method than the NCEP guidelines. Cholesterol-lowering medications are now chosen based on the 10-year risk of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease and other criteria, rather than on LDL-C or non-HDL-C objectives.

The revised guidelines include an evidence-based risk calculator for ASCVD that may be used to identify people who are most likely to benefit from treatment. It's for adults between the ages of 40 and 79 who don't have a heart condition. The computation takes into account a number of characteristics, including age, gender, race, total cholesterol, HDL-C, blood pressure, diabetes, and smoking habits. The new guidelines also suggest comparing therapeutic response to LDL-C baseline readings, with decrease criteria varying depending on the degree of lipid-lowering medication therapy.

Unhealthy lipid levels, as well as the presence of additional risk factors like age, family history, cigarette smoking, diabetes, and high blood pressure, may indicate that the person being examined needs to be treated.

The NCEP Adult Treatment Panel III guidelines specify target LDL cholesterol levels based on the findings of lipid testing and these other main risk factors. Individuals with LDL-C levels over the target limits will be treated, according to the guidelines.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, screening youths with risk factors for heart disease with a full, fasting lipid panel is advised. Fasting is not required prior to lipid screening in children who do not have any risk factors. For non-fasting lipid screening, non-high-density lipoprotein cholesterol is the preferred test. Non-HDL-C is computed by subtracting total cholesterol and HDL-C from total cholesterol and HDL-C.

Is there anything else I should know?

The measurement of triglycerides in people who haven't fasted is gaining popularity. Because most of the day, blood lipid levels reflect post-meal levels rather than fasting levels, a non-fasting sample may be more representative of the "usual" circulating level of triglyceride. However, because it is still unclear how to interpret non-fasting levels for assessing risk, the current recommendations for fasting before lipid tests remain unchanged.

A fasting lipid profile is usually included in a routine cardiac risk assessment. In addition, research into the utility of additional non-traditional cardiac risk markers, such as Lp-PLA2, is ongoing. A health care provider may use one or more of these markers to help determine a person's risk, but there is no consensus on how to use them and they are not widely available.

We advise having your results reviewed by a licensed medical healthcare professional for proper interpretation of your results.


Lipid Panel with Direct LDL includes:Total cholesterol —this test measures all of the cholesterol in all the lipoprotein particles.High-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) — measures the cholesterol in HDL particles; often called ""good cholesterol"" because it removes excess cholesterol and carries it to the liver for removal. Low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) — calculates the cholesterol in LDL particles; often called ""bad cholesterol"" because it deposits excess cholesterol in walls of blood vessels, which can contribute to atherosclerosis. Usually, the amount of LDL cholesterol (LDL-C) is calculated using the results of total cholesterol, HDL-C, and triglycerides.Triglycerides — measures all the triglycerides in all the lipoprotein particles; most is in the very low-density lipoproteins (VLDL). If Triglyceride result is >400 mg/dL, Direct LDL will be performed at an additional charge.


Apolipoprotein A1 (APO A1) has been reported to be a better predictor than HDL cholesterol and triglycerides for Coronary Artery Disease (CAD). Low levels of APO A1 in serum are associated with increased risk of CAD. The measurement of APO A1 may be of value in identifying patients with atherosclerosis.

Description: Apo A1 and B is a blood test that measures that amount of Apolipoprotein A1 and Apolipoprotein B in the blood’s serum along with the ratio between B/A1. This test is used to assess cardiovascular risk. Low levels of APO A1 are associated with Coronary Artery Disease (CAD) and are said to predict CAD better then triglycerides and HDL does.

Also Known As: Apo A1 and B Test, Apo A1 Test, Apo B Test, APOAB Test, Apolipoprotein B-100 Test, Apolipoprotein Evaluation Test

Collection Method: Blood Draw

Specimen Type: Serum

Test Preparation: Fasting for 12 hours is required.

When are Apolipoprotein A1 and B tests ordered?

Apolipoprotein A-I and B, as well as other lipid tests, may be ordered as part of a screening to identify a person's risk of cardiovascular disease.

Apo A-I is a protein that plays a key function in lipid metabolism and is the most abundant protein in HDL, or "good cholesterol." Excess cholesterol in cells is removed by HDL, which transports it to the liver for recycling or elimination. Apo A-I levels tend to rise and fall with HDL levels, and apo A-I deficits are linked to an increased risk of CVD.

Apo B is a protein that plays a role in lipid metabolism and is the major protein component of lipoproteins including VLDL and LDL, popularly known as "bad cholesterol." Apo B concentrations are similar to LDL-C concentrations.

What does Apolipoprotein A1 and B blood tests check for?

Lipids are transported throughout the bloodstream by apolipoproteins, which mix with them. Lipoproteins are held together by apolipoproteins, which protect the water-repellent lipids at their core.

Lipoproteins are cholesterol or triglyceride-rich proteins that transport lipids throughout the body for cell absorption. HDL, on the other hand, is like an empty cab or taxi. It travels to the tissues to collect excess cholesterol before returning it to the liver. Cholesterol is either recycled for future use or eliminated in bile in the liver. The only mechanism for cells to get rid of excess cholesterol is by HDL reverse transport. It protects the arteries and, if enough HDL is present, it can even reverse the formation of fatty plaques, which are deposits caused by atherosclerosis and can contribute to cardiovascular disease.

Sticking with the taxi analogy, the driver is Apolipoprotein A. It permits HDL to be detected and bound by receptors in the liver at the end of the transport by activating the enzymes that load cholesterol from the tissues into HDL. Apolipoprotein A is divided into two types: apo A-I and apo A-II. Apo A-I has a higher prevalence than apo A-II. Apo A-I concentrations can be evaluated directly, and they tend to rise and fall in tandem with HDL levels. Deficiencies in apo A-I are linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.

Chylomicrons are lipoprotein particles that transport dietary fats from the digestive system to tissue, primarily the liver, via the bloodstream. These dietary lipids are repackaged in the liver and combined with apo B-100 to create triglyceride-rich VLDL. This combo is similar to a taxi with a full load of passengers and apo B-100 as the driver. The taxi moves from place to place in the bloodstream, releasing one passenger at a time.

Triglycerides are removed from VLDL by an enzyme called lipoprotein lipase, which produces intermediate density lipoproteins first, then LDL. VLDL contains one molecule of apo B-100, which is kept as VLDL loses triglycerides and shrinks to become the cholesterol-rich LDL. Apo B-100 is detected by receptors on the surface of many different types of cells in the body. The absorption of cholesterol into cells is aided by these receptors.

LDL and apo B-100 transport cholesterol that is essential for cell membrane integrity, sex hormone generation, and steroid production. Excess LDL, on the other hand, can cause fatty deposits in artery walls, as well as blood vessel hardening and scarring. Atherosclerosis is a condition in which fatty deposits restrict blood arteries. The risk of a heart attack increases as the atherosclerotic process progresses.

LDL-C levels, which are typically ordered as part of a lipid profile, tend to mimic Apo B-100 levels. Many experts believe that apo B levels will eventually show to be a more accurate predictor of CVD risk than LDL-C. Others disagree, believing that vitamin B is only a modestly superior choice and that it should not be used on a regular basis. The clinical utility of apo B, as well as other developing cardiac risk markers including apo A-I, Lp(a), and hs-CRP, is still unknown.

Lab tests often ordered with Apolipoprotein A1 and B tests:

  • Cholesterol Total
  • HDL Cholesterol
  • LDL Cholesterol
  • Triglycerides
  • Lipid Panel
  • Lipoprotein (a)
  • Homocysteine
  • hs-CRP
  • Lipoprotein Fractionation, Ion Mobility

Conditions where Apolipoprotein A1 and B tests are recommended:

  • Cardiovascular Disease
  • Heart Attack
  • Stroke
  • Congestive Heart Failure
  • Angina

How does my health care provider use Apolipoprotein A1 and B tests?

An apo B/apo A-I ratio can be determined by ordering both an apo A-I and an apo B test. To assess the risk of developing CVD, this ratio is sometimes used instead of the total cholesterol/HDL ratio.

An apo A-I test may be ordered in the following situations:

Assist in the diagnosis of apo A-I deficiency caused by genetic or acquired diseases.

Assist those with a personal or family history of heart disease, high cholesterol, or triglycerides in their blood.

Keep track of how well lifestyle changes and lipid therapies are working.

An apo A-I test can be ordered in conjunction with an apo B test to determine the apo B/apo A-I ratio. This ratio is occasionally used instead of the total cholesterol/HDL ratio to assess the risk of developing CVD.

As an alternative to non-HDL-C, Apo B levels may be ordered to assess the success of lipid treatment.

An apo B test may be conducted in rare circumstances to assist determine a genetic issue that causes apo B overproduction or underproduction.

What do my Apolipoprotein A1 and B test results mean?

Low apo A-I levels are linked to low HDL levels and slowed elimination of excess cholesterol from the body. Low levels of apo A-I, as well as high levels of apo B, are linked to a higher risk of cardiovascular disease.

Deficiencies in apo A-I are caused by a number of hereditary diseases. Abnormal lipid levels, notably excessive amounts of low-density lipoprotein, are common in people with certain illnesses. They frequently have a higher rate of atherosclerosis. Low apo A-I levels are caused by several genetic diseases.

Raised apo B levels are linked to elevated LDL-C and non-HDL-C levels, and are linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. Elevations may be caused by a high-fat diet and/or a reduction in LDL clearance from the blood.

A direct cause of abnormal apo B levels is some hereditary diseases. Familial combined hyperlipidemia, for example, is an inherited condition that causes excessive cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood. Apolipoprotein B deficiency, also known as Bassen-Kornzweig syndrome, is a relatively rare hereditary disorder that results in unusually low amounts of apo B.

A variety of underlying diseases and other factors might result in abnormal apo B levels.

We advise having your results reviewed by a licensed medical healthcare professional for proper interpretation of your results.


Description: Apolipoprotein B is a blood test that measures that amount of Apolipoprotein B in the blood’s serum. This test is used to assess cardiovascular risk.

Also Known As: Apo B Test, Apolipoprotein B-100 Test

Collection Method: Blood Draw

Specimen Type: Serum

Test Preparation: No preparation required

When is an Apolipoprotein B test ordered?

Apolipoprotein A-I and B, as well as other lipid tests, may be ordered as part of a screening to identify a person's risk of cardiovascular disease.

Apo B is a protein that plays a role in lipid metabolism and is the major protein component of lipoproteins including VLDL and LDL, popularly known as "bad cholesterol." Apo B concentrations are similar to LDL-C concentrations.

What does an Apolipoprotein B blood test check for?

Lipids are transported throughout the bloodstream by apolipoproteins, which mix with them. Lipoproteins are held together by apolipoproteins, which protect the water-repellent lipids at their core.

Lipoproteins are cholesterol or triglyceride-rich proteins that transport lipids throughout the body for cell absorption. HDL, on the other hand, is like an empty cab. It travels to the tissues to collect excess cholesterol before returning it to the liver. Cholesterol is either recycled for future use or eliminated in bile in the liver. The only mechanism for cells to get rid of excess cholesterol is by HDL reverse transport. It protects the arteries and, if enough HDL is present, it can even reverse the formation of fatty plaques, which are deposits caused by atherosclerosis and can contribute to cardiovascular disease.

Chylomicrons are lipoprotein particles that transport dietary fats from the digestive system to tissue, primarily the liver, via the bloodstream. These dietary lipids are repackaged in the liver and combined with apo B-100 to create triglyceride-rich VLDL. This combo is similar to a taxi with a full load of passengers and apo B-100 as the driver. The taxi moves from place to place in the bloodstream, releasing one passenger at a time.

Triglycerides are removed from VLDL by an enzyme called lipoprotein lipase, which produces intermediate density lipoproteins first, then LDL. VLDL contains one molecule of apo B-100, which is kept as VLDL loses triglycerides and shrinks to become the cholesterol-rich LDL. Apo B-100 is detected by receptors on the surface of many different types of cells in the body. The absorption of cholesterol into cells is aided by these receptors.

LDL and apo B-100 transport cholesterol that is essential for cell membrane integrity, sex hormone generation, and steroid production. Excess LDL, on the other hand, can cause fatty deposits in artery walls, as well as blood vessel hardening and scarring. Atherosclerosis is a condition in which fatty deposits restrict blood arteries. The risk of a heart attack increases as the atherosclerotic process progresses.

LDL-C levels, which are typically ordered as part of a lipid profile, tend to mimic Apo B-100 levels. Many experts believe that apo B levels will eventually show to be a more accurate predictor of CVD risk than LDL-C. Others disagree, believing that vitamin B is only a modestly superior choice and that it should not be used on a regular basis. The clinical utility of apo B, as well as other developing cardiac risk markers including apo A-I, Lp(a), and hs-CRP, is still unknown.

Lab tests often ordered with an Apolipoprotein B test:

  • Apolipoprotein A1
  • Cholesterol Total
  • HDL Cholesterol
  • LDL Cholesterol
  • Triglycerides
  • Lipid Panel
  • Lipoprotein (a)
  • Homocysteine
  • hs-CRP
  • Lipoprotein Fractionation, Ion Mobility

Conditions where an Apolipoprotein B test is recommended:

  • Cardiovascular Disease
  • Heart Attack
  • Stroke
  • Congestive Heart Failure
  • Angina

How does my health care provider use an Apolipoprotein B test?

An apo B/apo A-I ratio can be determined by ordering both an apo A-I and an apo B test. To assess the risk of developing CVD, this ratio is sometimes used instead of the total cholesterol/HDL ratio.

As an alternative to non-HDL-C, Apo B levels may be ordered to assess the success of lipid treatment.

An apo B test may be conducted in rare circumstances to assist determine a genetic issue that causes apo B overproduction or underproduction.

What do my Apolipoprotein B test results mean?

Raised apo B levels are linked to elevated LDL-C and non-HDL-C levels, and are linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. Elevations may be caused by a high-fat diet and/or a reduction in LDL clearance from the blood.

A direct cause of abnormal apo B levels is some hereditary diseases. Familial combined hyperlipidemia, for example, is an inherited condition that causes excessive cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood. Apolipoprotein B deficiency, also known as Bassen-Kornzweig syndrome, is a relatively rare hereditary disorder that results in unusually low amounts of apo B.

A variety of underlying diseases and other factors might result in abnormal apo B levels.

Is apoB a heart disease risk factor? 
The markers of particle number, apoB, or LDL particle number were better at predicting the risk of heart disease than LDL-C.

There are two major forms of Apolipoprotein B, B-100 and B-48. B-100, synthesized in the liver, is the major protein in VLDL, IDL, and LDL cholesterol. B-48, synthesized in the intestines, is essential for the assembly and secretion of chylomicrons. Patients with increased concentrations of Apolipoprotein B are at increased risk of atherosclerosis.

We advise having your results reviewed by a licensed medical healthcare professional for proper interpretation of your results.


Description: The CRP test is used to identify and/or monitor inflammation in patients.

Also Known As: CRP Test, Inflammation test

Collection Method: Blood Draw

Specimen Type: Serum

Test Preparation: No preparation required

When is a C-Reactive Protein test ordered?

When a person's medical history and signs and symptoms indicate that they may have a significant bacterial infection, a CRP test may be recommended. When a newborn displays signs of infection or when a person has sepsis symptoms including fever, chills, and rapid breathing and heart rate, it may be ordered.

It's also commonly requested on a regular basis to check illnesses like rheumatoid arthritis and lupus, and it's routinely repeated to see if medication is working. This is especially effective for inflammation issues because CRP levels decrease as inflammation decreases.

What does a C-Reactive Protein blood test check for?

C-reactive protein is a protein produced by the liver and released into the bloodstream within a few hours following tissue injury, infection, or other inflammatory event. After trauma or a heart attack, with active or uncontrolled autoimmune illnesses, and with acute bacterial infections like sepsis, markedly higher levels are reported. CRP levels can rise by a thousand-fold in response to inflammatory diseases, and their elevation in the blood can occur before pain, fever, or other clinical signs. The test detects inflammation caused by acute situations or monitors disease activity in chronic diseases by measuring the level of CRP in the blood.

The CRP test is not a diagnostic tool, although it can tell a doctor if inflammation is occurring. This information can be combined with other indicators like signs and symptoms, a physical exam, and other tests to establish whether someone has an acute inflammatory disorder or is having a flare-up of a chronic inflammatory disease. The health care provider may next do additional tests and treatment.

This CRP test should not be confused with the hs-CRP test. These are two separate CRP tests, each of which measures a different range of CRP levels in the blood for different purposes.

Lab tests often ordered with a C-Reactive Protein test:

  • Sed Rate (ESR)
  • Procalcitonin
  • ANA
  • Rheumatoid Factor
  • Complement

Conditions where a C-Reactive Protein test is recommended:

  • Arthritis
  • Autoimmune Disorders
  • Pelvic Inflammatory Disease
  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease
  • Sepsis
  • Vasculitis
  • Systemic Lupus Erythematosus
  • Meningitis and Encephalitis

Commonly Asked Questions:

How does my health care provider use a C-Reactive Protein test?

A health practitioner uses the C-reactive protein test to diagnose inflammation. CRP is an acute phase reactant, a protein produced by the liver and released into the bloodstream within a few hours following tissue injury, infection, or other inflammatory event. The CRP test is not a diagnostic test for any ailment, but it can be used in conjunction with other tests to determine whether a person has an acute or chronic inflammatory disorder.

CRP, for example, can be used to detect or track substantial inflammation in someone who is suspected of having an acute ailment like:

  • Sepsis is a dangerous bacterial infection.
  • An infection caused by a fungus
  • Inflammation of the pelvis

People with chronic inflammatory diseases can use the CRP test to detect flare-ups and/or see if their medication is working. Here are a few examples:

  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Arthritis, which can take many forms.
  • Autoimmune disorders, examples include lupus and vasculitis

CRP is occasionally requested in conjunction with an erythrocyte sedimentation rate, another inflammatory test. While the CRP test is not specific enough to diagnose an illness, it does serve as a broad marker for infection and inflammation, alerting doctors to the need for more testing and treatment. A variety of additional tests may be used to determine the source of inflammation, depending on the probable cause.

What do my C-Reactive Protein test results mean?

CRP levels in the blood are usually low.

CRP levels in the blood that are high or rising indicate the existence of inflammation, but they don't tell you where it is or what's causing it. A high CRP level can establish the presence of a severe bacterial infection in people who are suspected of having one. High levels of CRP in persons with chronic inflammatory disorders indicate a flare-up or that treatment isn't working.

When the CRP level rises and then falls, it indicates that the inflammation or infection is diminishing and/or responding to treatment.

Is there anything else I should know about C-Reactive Protein?

CRP levels can rise during pregnancy, as well as with the use of birth control tablets or hormone replacement therapy. Obese people have also been found to have higher CRP levels.

In the presence of inflammation, the erythrocyte sedimentation rate test will also rise; however, CRP rises first and then falls faster than the ESR.

We advise having your results reviewed by a licensed medical healthcare professional for proper interpretation of your results.


Description: A hs-CRP or High Sensitivity C-Reactive Protein test is a blood test used to accurately detect lower concentrations of the protein C-Reactive Protein. This test is used to evaluate your risk of cardiovascular and heart disease and to check for inflammation and many other issues.

Also Known As: hsCRP Test, Cardiac CRP Test, high sensitivity C-reactive protein Test, CRP Test for heart disease.

Collection Method: Blood Draw

Specimen Type: Serum

Test Preparation: No preparation required

When is a hs-CRP test ordered?

There is currently no consensus on when to get an hs-CRP test. It may be beneficial for treatment purposes to order hs-CRP for those that have kidney disease, diabetes or inflammatory disorders.

It's possible that hs-CRP will be tested again to confirm that a person has persistently low levels of inflammation.

What does a hs-CRP blood test check for?

C-reactive protein is a protein found in the blood that rises in response to infection and inflammation, as well as after trauma, surgery, or a heart attack. As a result, it's one of numerous proteins referred to as acute phase reactants. The high-sensitivity CRP test detects low levels of inflammation in the blood, which are linked to an increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease.

According to the American Heart Association, CVD kills more people in the United States each year than any other cause. A number of risk factors have been related to the development of CVD, including family history, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, being overweight or diabetic, however a considerable number of people with few or no recognized risk factors will also acquire CVD. This has prompted researchers to investigate for new risk variables that could be causing CVD or could be used to identify lifestyle modifications and/or treatments that could lower a person's risk.

High-sensitivity CRP is one of an increasing number of cardiac risk markers that may be used to assess an individual's risk. According to certain research, monitoring CRP with a highly sensitive assay can assist identify the risk level for CVD in persons who appear to be healthy. CRP levels at the higher end of the reference range can be measured with this more sensitive test. Even when cholesterol levels are within an acceptable range, these normal but slightly elevated levels of CRP in otherwise healthy persons might indicate the future risk of a heart attack, sudden cardiac death, stroke, and peripheral artery disease.

Lab tests often ordered with a hs-CRP test:

  • Complete Blood Count
  • Lipid Panel
  • Comprehensive Metabolic Panel
  • Lp-Pla2
  • Glucose

Conditions where a hs-CRP test is recommended:

  • Heart Attack
  • Heart Disease
  • Cardiovascular Disease
  • Stroke

How does my health care provider use a hs-CRP test?

A test for high-sensitivity C-reactive protein can be used to assess a person's risk of cardiovascular disease. It can be used in conjunction with a lipid profile or other cardiac risk markers, such as the lipoprotein-associated phospholipase A2 test, to provide further information regarding the risk of heart disease.

CRP is a protein that rises in the bloodstream as a result of inflammation. A continuous low level of inflammation, according to studies, plays a crucial role in atherosclerosis, the narrowing of blood vessels caused by the build-up of cholesterol and other lipids, which is typically linked to CVD. The hs-CRP test successfully detects low levels of C-reactive protein, indicating low but chronic inflammation, and so aids in predicting a person's risk of developing CVD.

Some specialists believe that high-sensitivity CRP is a good test for assessing CVD, heart attacks, and stroke risk, and that it can help in the evaluation process before a person gets one of these health problems. Some experts believe that combining a good marker for inflammation, such as hs-CRP, with a lipid profile is the best way to predict risk. This test has been recommended by several organizations for persons who are at a moderate risk of having a heart attack in the following ten years.

What does my hs-CRP test result mean?

Even when cholesterol levels are within an acceptable range, high levels of hs-CRP in otherwise healthy people have been found to predict an elevated risk of future heart attacks, strokes, sudden cardiac death, and/or peripheral arterial disease.

Higher hs-CRP concentrations indicate a higher risk of cardiovascular disease, while lower values indicate a lower risk. Individuals with hs-CRP values at the high end of the normal range are 1.5 to 4 times more likely than those with low levels of hs-CRP to have a heart attack.

We advise having your results reviewed by a licensed medical healthcare professional for proper interpretation of your results.


Cardio IQ® Diabetes and ASCVD Risk Panel with Scores - Includes:  Cardio IQ® Glucose; Cardio IQ® Hemoglobin A1c; Cardio IQ® Cholesterol, Total; Cardio IQ® HDL Cholesterol; Cardio IQ® Triglycerides; Cardio IQ® Non-HDL and Calculated Components; Cardio IQ® Risks and Personal Factors

If Triglyceride is >400 mg/dL, Cardio IQ® Direct LDL will be performed at an additional charge (CPT code(s): 83721).

Clinical Significance

The increasing prevalence of obesity has led to an epidemic of diabetes mellitus and related complications, including ASCVD. Prediction of the risk of ASCVD and of developing diabetes in the Cardio IQ® lab report will simplify and improve the communication of those risks to patients.

This panel provides the 10-year and lifetime risk of ASCVD events and the 8-year risk of developing diabetes. The lipid panel results will aid in the assessment of ASCVD. Assessment of 10-year risk of a first atherosclerotic cardiovascular (ASCVD) event is recommended by the 2013 ACC/AHA Guidelines on the Treatment of Blood Cholesterol to Reduce Atherosclerotic Cardiovascular Risk in Adults. These guidelines recommend initiating statin therapy based on 10-year ASCVD risk score. Assessment of 8-year risk of developing diabetes mellitus is based on laboratory test results with anthropomorphic data and family history. This algorithm was developed in the Framingham cohort, and is intended to aid in the identification of patients at risk for developing diabetes, permitting pharmacological or lifestyle interventions.

IMPORTANT: For risk calculations to be performed, the following patient-specific information must be provided and recorded at the time of specimen collection:

  • Age: Years 
  • Gender: M (for male) or F (for female) 
  • Height Feet: Feet 
  • Height Inches: Inches 
  • Weight: lbs 
  • Race-African American: Y (for yes) or N (for no) 
  • Systolic Blood Pressure: mmHg
  • Diastolic Blood Pressure: mmHg
  • Treatment for High B.P.: Y (for yes) or N (for no) 
  • Diabetes Status: Y (for yes) or N (for no)
  • Parental History of Diab: Y (for yes) or N (for no) 
  • Smoking Status: Y (for Yes) or N (for no)

Cardio IQ® Diabetes Risk Panel with Score - 

Includes
Cardio IQ® Glucose; Cardio IQ® Hemoglobin A1c; Cardio IQ® Cholesterol, Total; Cardio IQ® HDL Cholesterol; Cardio IQ® Triglycerides; Cardio IQ® Non-HDL and Calculated Components; Cardio IQ® 8 Year Diabetes Risk

If Triglyceride is >400 mg/dL, Cardio IQ® Direct LDL will be performed at an additional charge (CPT code(s): 83721).

Clinical Significance

Permit the assessment of serum glucose levels and lipid levels and the prediction of the 8-year future risk of developing diabetes mellitus in patients without diabetes mellitus.

• Assess risk for developing type 2 diabetes mellitus
• Identify lifestyle interventions and/or pharmacotherapy
• This test provides an 8-year risk of developing type 2 diabetes

Type 1 diabetes mellitus is defined as a deficiency of insulin secretion. Type 2 diabetes, which accounts for greater than 90% of all diabetes cases, is caused by a combination of insulin resistance and an inadequate compensatory insulin secretion.

Type 2 diabetes frequently goes undiagnosed, because it has no classic symptoms of diabetes and it progresses slowly from a pre-diabetic state. 

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 37% of individuals that are greater than 20 years old and approximately  half of those are greater than 65 years old have pre-diabetes. These individuals are at high risk for progression to type 2 diabetes and are candidates for preventive therapy that include lifestyle modification, such as weight  loss, increased physical activity, and medication.

IMPORTANT: For risk calculations to be performed, the following patient-specific information must be provided and recorded at the time of specimen collection:

  • Age: Years 
  • Gender: M (for male) or F (for female) 
  • Height Feet: Feet 
  • Height Inches: Inches 
  • Weight: lbs 
  • Race-African American: Y (for yes) or N (for no) 
  • Systolic Blood Pressure: mmHg
  • Diastolic Blood Pressure: mmHg
  • Treatment for High B.P.: Y (for yes) or N (for no) 
  • Diabetes Status: Y (for yes) or N (for no)
  • Parental History of Diab: Y (for yes) or N (for no) 
  • Smoking Status: Y (for Yes) or N (for no)


Cholesterol is a wax-like substance in your blood that your body needs to build healthy cells, but it only needs so much. If you have more than you need, whether that's from a genetic predisposition or lifestyle choices, it can build up in your blood vessels. 

That build-up cholesterol looks like fatty deposits in your blood vessels, which restricts blood flow through them. 

You can think of healthy blood vessels like a hose or a straw. Liquid (blood) flows smoothly through it to the final destination. But when fatty deposits build upon the sides of the vessels, it's like you're pinching part of the hose.

That, in turn, raises blood pressure since the body has to work harder to get your blood from here to there, and a diagnosis of high blood pressure may lead to your doctor suggesting you get cholesterol testing. 

High Cholesterol: The Silent Killer 

Sometimes you'll hear cholesterol called a "silent killer" because there's no way to detect it other than through blood tests. Your doctor may inform you that you're at risk of high cholesterol or order tests based on other factors, like your blood pressure or family history, but they can't be sure until they take a blood sample. 

As busy adults trying to work and raise a family, it's easy to put off going to the doctor as often as we should, which gives high cholesterol a chance to build unnoticed. 

Risk Factors for High Cholesterol 

Don't know whether you should be worried about your cholesterol levels or not? Look at the risk factors below, self-evaluate your risk, and then communicate any concerns to your doctor. 

Poor Diet 

The average American diet is high in cholesterol. If your diet is high in processed foods, animal products, and fats, you're at a greater risk of developing high cholesterol. 

There are no foods that "reduce" cholesterol immediately, but eating a diet heavy in green vegetables and plant-based foods is a protective factor. 

Like the cereal Cheerios, some whole grains help lower your cholesterol, too, as they're a long-acting and plant-based source of energy. 

If your blood tests come back with high or borderline-high cholesterol levels, expect your doctor to suggest changes to your diet. 

You're Overweight 

While the BMI is not the most comprehensive medical assessment, a high BMI still puts you at risk for health complications. You can calculate your BMI using calculators online. If your number comes back at 30 or above, you have a higher risk of high cholesterol. 

Smoking 

Smokers are at risk of developing high cholesterol, as the toxins in cigarettes and e-cigarettes are harmful to the heart. 

Genetic Factors 

You can't always control your high cholesterol risk. You can reduce it by following healthy lifestyle practices (avoiding the risk factors above), but some people have a higher risk due to genetic factors. 

If you're born with or develop diabetes, your doctor will monitor your cholesterol levels. Due to the complexities of having diabetes (and the testing involved), it's rare to see people with diabetes with high cholesterol undiagnosed. 

Liver Issues 

This genetic predisposition is sneakier than cholesterol's link to diabetes. You could be born with a liver that produces too much natural cholesterol, or your genetic makeup may prevent cells from removing it from your blood in the way they're meant to. 

There's no way to detect this other than blood tests, though your doctor may have told you you're at risk due to family history. 

The Symptoms of High Cholesterol

There are no direct symptoms of high cholesterol. That's why getting a blood test is so important if you or your doctor are concerned. 

Testing is quick and covered by most insurance plans - there's no reason not to know! 

I'm Concerned About My Risk: What Should I Do? 

If you're worried or you want to be safe, they should have no qualms ordering these tests for you. There are no side effects to getting these tests done, apart from the mild discomfort of a blood draw. 

No matter what the results are, it's better to know. 

If you're worried about your cholesterol or your doctor just ordered tests, and you want to know what that means, we're covering the top ten blood tests for cholesterol below. 

Standard Cholesterol Testing Lab Tests

Your doctor may order one or multiple tests to detect your cholesterol levels, or you can even order them yourself. 

Ordering them yourself through this link is convenient and easy. It's an excellent choice for busy, health-conscious individuals. 

Either way, you can detect cholesterol through: 

1. A Lipid Panel With Ratios 

Lipids are an organic compound found in your blood that acts as one of the building blocks for healthy cells. They're also in charge of delivering cholesterol (both good and bad) around the body, which is why doing a lipid profile to test for cholesterol is a good choice.

By taking a small vial of blood (usually less than 10 ml), the lab can test:

  • Total Cholesterol
  • HDL (good cholesterol)
  • LDL (bad cholesterol)
  • Triglycerides (VLDL)

Your doctor or the lab should call or update your health profile with the results, with both the number/percentages and a worded interpretation that you can easily understand. 

The same is true when you order a lipid panel off our website. Our turnaround is sometimes even quicker than a doctor's office, as we have fewer hoops to jump through. 

Your test will come with detailed instructions and information on obtaining your results.

Reading Your Results 

As you may have noticed by reading the descriptions of the tests above, there are two types of cholesterol. There's HDL, which is considered "good" or "protective" cholesterol, and LDL, which is "harmful" or "bad."

The difference is simple. HDL transports excess cholesterol to your liver so that it can be processed and expelled from your body. The higher your HDL levels are (within the healthy range), the better your body keeps your vessels healthy. 

On the other hand, LDL is excess cholesterol that can lead to plaque or fatty build-ups in your arteries and put you at a higher risk of the issues we mentioned above. 

Raising your HDL levels won't "cure" high cholesterol, but it will help your body process some of your excesses more efficiently, lowering your LDL levels. 

Raising your HDL levels and lowering your LDL's go hand in hand. 

2. Apolipoprotein B

Another option is to run an Apolipoprotein B test, which takes the same kind of sample (and can be ordered simultaneously as any other test). 

This protein, usually shortened to apo B, is a protein that helps metabolize (break down) lipids and is a central component of LDL or bad cholesterol. 

A high apo B test result is indicative of elevated LDL. It's better to know - order an Apolipoprotein B test here.

3. High Sensitivity C-reactive Protein (hs-CRP) 

This is another test that will detect cholesterol levels but also assess your risk of developing heart disease. 

This particular test is drawn the same way as the tests before and is usually done in conjunction with a lipids panel (which may need to be done fasted). 

The hs-CRP test doesn't directly test your cholesterol. Instead, it looks at the level of inflammation in your blood, which is related to atherosclerosis (the narrowing of blood vessels due to LDL build-up). 

Testing your hs-CRP levels is a good test to do, along with a lipids panel to not only check what your cholesterol levels are but how much of a toll they're taking on the body. 

If you don't have time to go to a physician, this test will give you a more in-depth understanding of your cholesterol health risks in combination with your lipid panels. Order it now

4. Lipoprotein Fractionation

Lipids are involved in more organic processes than just moving cholesterol around the body. They carry other amino acids, proteins, and organic material. 

This test looks at the makeup of the lipids available in your blood and determines the size of each molecule within the lipid. 

It also goes hand in hand with a lipid profile and helps identify risk factors, including (but not limited to) high cholesterol. 

Order this test here

5. Lipoprotein A 

If you know you have a family history of heart disease or high cholesterol, then that's a good time to run a Lipoprotein (a) test. 

This blood test identifies apolipoprotein in the blood, a particle found in LDL molecules. 

You may also want to order this test if your test shows moderate or risk-level but not high cholesterol. Why? This is one of the tests that can determine if you have a genetic predisposition to more elevated cholesterol. The higher your Lp(a) levels, the less likely your LDL will respond to typical risk-reduction strategies.

Don't worry, that doesn't mean you don't have treatment options - it's more likely you'll be looking at medication than lifestyle change factors. It's better to know - order now

6. Apolipoprotein A1

Another test that looks at your apolipoprotein levels is often done to see how high cholesterol reduction campaigns are working. If you've been trying to get your cholesterol down but don't have time to do a full (fasted) lipid panel, this is a good choice. 

Your doctor may also order this (or direct you to order it on our site) to assess your risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) in response to your family history. 

If you're a parent and you know you have a history of CVD, talk to your pediatrician about the relevance of this test for your child, then order it online

7. Lp-PLA²

Like the hs-CRP test, this lipoprotein-associated phospholipase A² looks at inflammation levels in your blood vessels. 

A high level of Lp-PLA² in your blood suggests a higher risk for CVD and certain types of strokes. Please don't risk it; order your test here

8. VLDL Cholesterol Test 

There are technically two types of "bad" cholesterol. LDL and VLDL - and no, the V does not stand for "very" or anything that denotes quantification or intensity. 

VLDL is simply a sub-type of LDL with more triglycerides than LDL molecules. When you have high LDL levels, both types are present. 

This test should come as a part of your lipids panel, though, as you can see, it's available separately as well

9. Direct LDL

By this time, you know what LDL is, and you know that it's preferable to have lower levels if you're only interested in seeing your LDL levels and not your VLDL or HDL, order this test. 

Order this test here

10. APOE Genotyping

Finally, you may order an APOE genotyping test, though it's less common than the options listed above. The apolipoprotein E (APOE) genotype is a genetic risk factor for dementia, Alzheimer's disease, and cardiovascular disease (CVD). It includes three alleles (e2, e3, e4) located on chromosome 19q3.2. Those with at least one e4 allele are at increased risk for CVD outcomes.

  • Homozygous 3 - Normal lipid metabolism and normal risk for CHD
  • Heterozygous or homozygous for isoform: 2 - Increased risk for high levels of plasma triglyceride and CHD
  • Heterozygous or homozygous for isoform: 4 - Increased risk for high levels of total cholesterol and CHD

Order this test to determine if you possess a higher risk of developing CVD.

Why Order Tests Online? 

Depending on your insurance, provider, and location, it may make more sense for you to order tests online. If you have an HSA plan, our tests likely qualify for your HSA. 

When you order from us, you will get a notification that your cholesterol testing results are ready, which will direct you to a secure patient portal. 

You can then share these results with your physician or use them for your peace of mind. 

Before you order, be sure to check out the homepage for any specials we're running, as it's our goal to provide you with as many options as possible at the lowest price without sacrificing quality.