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Commonly asked questions about cholesterol testing and NMR Lipid Panel Testing
Elevated cholesterol is an important risk factor in the development of atherosclerosis, heart disease and stroke. Cholesterol is dependent on genetic and style-based risk factors (i.e. diet . exercise and smoking status). TeleTest offers standard lipid profile testing and NMR lipid profile testing. Current 2021 Canadian Cardiovascular Society Guidelines recommend standard lipid profile screening every 5 years with a once-in-a-lifetime test of Lipoprotein A. NMR lipid profile testing is currently only offered through one partner laboratory - Dynacare.
If you have a valid Ontario health card and qualify for screening, your cholesterol test is insured. If you have already completed OHIP insured testing through TeleTest or another healthcare provider, you can arrange for more frequent cholesterol monitoring by paying for 3rd party testing through TeleTest.
Once you complete an intake questionnaire, determine if you qualify for OHIP insured testing. If you do not qualify, you can pay an uninsured lab fee to access testing. If you would like to monitor your cholesterol profiles more frequently than is currently permissible under Canadian Guidelines, you can pay for testing as frequently as you would like.
- Obesity (BMI > 30)
- Family history of early heart disease (women before age 65 and men before age 55 with a history of heart attack and stroke)
- Current Smoker
- Having an inflammatory disease (rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, ulcerative colitis, celiac disease, Crohn’s disease)
- History of Aortic Aneurysm
- Erectile Dysfunction
- Family History of High Cholesterol
If you have developed new risk factors since your last screening, you can qualify for more frequent screening every 2 years.
Some medications are associated with increases in cholesterol. The list below is a small list of medications that cause high cholesterol - if you have questions about other medications, please reach out to us. Some medications require more frequent annual screening.
- HIV HAART Therapy
A standard lipid profile measures LDL-C (bad cholesterol), HDL-C (good cholesterol) and triglycerides (free-floating fat in the bloodstream). LDL-C is a measure of the total cholesterol attached to LDL particles. The actual number of LDL particles floating in the bloodstream is called LDL-P and is only measured by an NMR Lipid profile (NMR testing uses nuclear magnetic resonance to detect the total number of LDL particles in the bloodstream). We recommend using LDL-P to guide decision-making as to when LDL-P levels are increased, even when LDL levels are normal, an individual has a higher risk of heart attack and stroke.
Currently, only Dynacare offers NMR Lipid Profile Testing.