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Have you had your cholesterol levels checked lately? High cholesterol is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease, which can lead to a heart attack or stroke. Cardiovascular disease kills more men and women each year than any other illness.

High blood cholesterol has no warning signs or symptoms. Since people diagnosed with high cholesterol often feel fine, they may not take their condition seriously.

Have your cholesterol levels checked regularly. If your level is high, there are a lot of steps you can take to lower it.

I. Let's Get Started
Step 1: The dangers of high cholesterol
Step 2: Types of cholesterol
Step 3: What causes high cholesterol?
II. Diagnosing High Cholesterol
Step 4: Symptoms of high cholesterol
Step 5: Cholesterol screening and testing
III. Managing Your Cholesterol Level
Step 6: Maintain healthy habits
Step 7: Cholesterol-lowering drugs
Step 8: You and your doctor are a team

Learn More

Butter, margarine, and cooking oils: What should you use?

Children can have high cholesterol, too!

Drug treatments: Bile acid resins

Drug treatments: Cholesterol absorption inhibitors

Drug treatments: Fibrates

Drug treatments: Nicotinic acid

Drug treatments: Statins

Drug treatments: Using more than one drug

High cholesterol and memory loss


Helpful Handouts

Questions to ask your doctor


References

Mosca L, et al. Effectiveness-based guidelines for the prevention of cardiovascular disease in women - 2011 update. A guideline from the American Heart Association. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2011;57(12):1404-1423.

Greenland P, et al. 2010 CCF/AHA guideline for assessment of cardiovascular risk in asymptomatic adults. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2010;56(25):e50-e103.

Brunzell JD, et al. Lipoprotein management in patients with cardiometabolic risk. Consensus conference report from the American Diabetes Association and the American College of Cardiology Foundation. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2008;51(15):1512-1524.

Smith CS, et al. AHA/ACCF secondary prevention and risk reduction therapy for patients with coronary and other athersclerotic vascular disease: 2011 update. J Am Coll Cardiol. 58(23):2432-2446.

Stephan D, et al. 2012 ACCF/AHA/ACP/AATS/PCNA/SCAI/STS guideline for the diagnosis and management of patients with stable ischemic heart disease. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2012;60(24):e44-e164.

 

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Review Date: 12/31/2012
Reviewed By: Glenn Gandelman, MD, MPH, FACC Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine at New York Medical College; Private Practice specializing in Cardiovascular Disease in Greenwich, CT. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network.
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