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At a Glance
Why Get Tested?
To assess your risk of developing cardiovascular disease (CVD); to monitor treatment
When to Get Tested?
Screening when no risk factors present: for adults, every four to six years; for youths, once between the ages of 9 and 11 and again between ages 17 and 21
Monitoring: at regular intervals when risk factors are present, when prior results showed high risk levels, and/or to monitor effectiveness of treatment
A blood sample obtained by inserting a needle into a vein in your arm or from a fingerstick
Test Preparation Needed?
Typically, fasting for 9-12 hours (water only) before having your blood drawn is required, but some labs offer non-fasting lipid testing. Follow any instructions you are given and tell the person drawing your blood whether or not you have fasted. For youths without risk factors, testing may be done without fasting.