LDL test

What is LDL Test

LDL refers to low-density lipoprotein which is often also termed as "bad" cholesterol. Lipoproteins constitutes of protein and fat. They carrytriglycerides, cholesterol, and other fats, refer to as lipids, in the blood to the other parts of the body.

This LDL test is conducted to evaluate the quantity of LDL cholesterol in your blood. Excessive of LDL in the blood can create trouble by clogging arteries.

Alternative Names

Low-density lipoprotein test

How the LDL Test is Performed

Blood is basically drawn from a vein, generally from the inside vein of the elbow or the back vein of the hand. The site is washed and cleaned with germ-killing antiseptic. The health care professionalties an elastic band on the upper arm to administer pressure to the area and allow the vein bulge out filled with blood.

After this, the health care specialist will push the needle into the vein softly. The blood will be taken into an airtight tube or vial attached to the syringe. The elastic band is untied from your arm after the blood is drawn and collected safely.

Once the blood has been taken, the needle is withdrawn from the vein and the punctured site is compressed with a cotton ball or covered to cease any bleeding.

In infants or small children, a sharp device referred to as a lancet can also be facilitated to puncture the site and enable it bleed. The blood is taken into a small tube - pipette, or can also be taken onto test strip. A bandage may be applied on the site if there is any bleeding.

How to Prepare for the Test

You may also be instructed to stop eating or drinking anything for 9 - 12 hours prior to the test.
The health care provider may tell you to stop taking certain drugs before the procedure.

How the Test Will Feel

When the needle is pushed into the vein to take blood, you may feel moderate pain, or only a stinging sensation. After this you may be feeling some kind of pounding.

Why LDL Test is Performed

This test is basically performed to ascertain your vulnerability to heart disease. The LDL test is generally conducted as part of a lipid analysis, which also tests total cholesterol, HDL, and triglyceride levels.

LDL takes cholesterol to several tissues across the body. Excessive of LDL, generally termed as "bad cholesterol," can result in cardiovascular disease.

If the findings of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute is to be believed, the lower the LDL you report, the lower your vulnerability for heart disease or stroke.

Normal Values of LDL Test

A healthy LDL report is one that comes under the ambit of near-optimal range.

  • Optimal: Less than 100 mg/dL (less than 70 mg/dL for individual having a history of heart disorder or those at very high vulnerability for atherosclerotic disease)
  • Near Optimal: 100 - 129 mg/dL
  • Acceptable High: 130 - 159 mg/dL
  • High: 160 - 189 mg/dL
  • Very High: 190 mg/dL and more

Normal value span may differ mildly among different laboratories. Talk to your doctor about the interpretation of your particular test results.

What Abnormal Results Mean

High levels of LDL may indicate:

  • Enhanced risk of atherosclerotic heart disease
  • Familial Hyperlipoproteinemia

Lower than normal quantity of LDL may be the result of:

  • Malabsorption (insufficient absorption of nutrients from the intestinal tract)
  • Malnutrition

Other occasions under which the test can be recommended are:

  • Familial Combined Hyperlipidemia
  • Familial Dysbetalipoproteinemia
  • Familial Hypertriglyceridemia

The Risks Associated with LDL Test

Arteries and veins differ in size in different patients and also vary from one side of the body to the other. Collecting a blood sample from some individual may be harder than from others.

Other risks linked with getting the blood collected are mild but may include:

  • Continuous and excessive bleeding
  • Fainting or light-headedness
  • Hematoma (collection of blood under the skin)
  • Infection (a mild risk any time the skin is punctured)