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Cholesterol Management


Cholesterol Management

About Cholesterol Management

High levels of “bad” (LDL) cholesterol play a major role in several serious health problems, including coronary artery disease and stroke. Routine blood tests are important for monitoring the levels of cholesterol so optimal treatment can be provided. The team at AssociatesMD provides cholesterol testing and treatments at their offices in Plantation, Pembroke Pines, Fort Lauderdale, Davie, Weston, Margate, and Dania Beach, Florida. They offer men and women treatment options they need to reduce levels of LDL cholesterol so they can enjoy better health and avoid serious complications. To learn more about cholesterol management, call AssociatesMD or request an appointment online today.

Cholesterol Management Q & A

What is cholesterol?

Cholesterol is a naturally occurring waxy substance that plays a necessary role in maintaining good health. Cholesterol is divided into two types: low-density lipoprotein (LDL) and high-density lipoprotein (HDL). Often, LDL is referred to as “bad” cholesterol because it tends to build up in the arteries, building clumps or plaques along the artery walls and interfering with normal circulation. HDL is referred to as “good” cholesterol because it helps remove LDL from the arteries. 

Actually, both LDL and HDL are essential for good health. The key is to maintain an optimal balance of both. While HDL levels can dip below healthy levels, far more often, LDL levels rise to unhealthy levels as a result of the foods we eat and other factors.

What kinds of health problems have been linked to high cholesterol?

High levels of HDL cholesterol (referred to as “high cholesterol”) result in a serious condition called atherosclerosis (or “hardening” of the arteries), a condition that causes the arteries to become stiff and inflexible, making it more difficult for blood to flow normally. At the same time, the plaques that form along the artery walls can interfere with blood flow to the heart, brain, and other organs, increasing the risks of heart attack, stroke, kidney disease, dementia, and other health problems.

How is high cholesterol diagnosed?

High cholesterol can be easily measured with a simple blood test that looks at both HDL and LDL levels, as well as levels of related substances called triglycerides. Because high cholesterol causes no symptoms until a serious complication like heart disease occurs, having routine screenings is important for good health.

What does cholesterol management entail?

High cholesterol can be treated with medications, most commonly statins, that help keep levels of LDL cholesterol under control. Patients who are diagnosed with high cholesterol can benefit by adopting some essential changes in lifestyle habits, including reducing their intake of foods high in saturated fats and increasing their intake of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Being more physically active and avoiding a sedentary lifestyle is also important, especially for keeping the circulatory system in good shape. 

Some patients with only slightly elevated levels of LDL may be able to lower their cholesterol without the use of medications. Having cholesterol checked on a regular basis - at least with each annual physical - can help ensure LDL cholesterol remains under control and HDL remains at optimal levels.

To schedule a cholesterol management appointment at AssociatesMD, call the office or request an appointment online today.