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Cholesterol

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Also known as: Blood Cholesterol
Formal name: Total Cholesterol

At a Glance

Why Get Tested?

To screen for risk of developing heart disease

When to Get Tested?

Adults should be tested once every five years, or more frequently if being treated for high cholesterol or have one or more risk factors for heart disease. Children, teens, and young adults should be tested once between the ages of 9 and 11 and then again between the ages of 17 and 21.

Sample Required?

A blood sample drawn from a vein in your arm or a fingerstick

Test Preparation Needed?

If you are having this test performed as part of the lipid profile, typically you will need to fast for 9-12 hours before the sample is collected; only water is permitted. Follow any instructions you are given.