What is Lipoprotein Test?

The level of lipoprotein (a) in the blood is determined by a lipoprotein (a) test. One may be at an increased risk for heart disease and stroke if one has a high level of blood lipoprotein (a).

Particles called lipoproteins are composed of protein and fat (lipids). They deliver cholesterol to the cells through the bloodstream. High-density lipoprotein, or "good" cholesterol, and low-density lipoprotein, or "bad" cholesterol, are the two main categories of lipoproteins.

Lipoprotein (a) is a kind of LDL. These lipoproteins transport cholesterol to the cells in the arteries. If you have excessive levels of LDL particles, cholesterol can accumulate in the arteries and create plaques, which are blockages. This is known as atherosclerosis or "hardening of the arteries." It can lead to various significant medical issues, including:

Due to their stickier nature compared to other LDL particle types, lipoprotein (a) particles may be more prone to obstructing the arteries and forming blood clots. High levels of lipoprotein (a) may therefore indicate a very high risk for stroke, heart disease, and other severe illnesses linked to artery blockages and blood clots.

A lipoprotein (a) blood test can provide a more accurate view of the risk than a standard cholesterol test examining total LDL cholesterol levels. This is because, while a standard cholesterol test may show that the LDL cholesterol level is "good," if lipoprotein (a) particles carry a significant portion of the LDL cholesterol, the risk for heart disease and stroke remains high.

Other names: Lp(a), cholesterol Lp(a)

What is the purpose of the lipoprotein test?

A lipoprotein (a) test can help you understand the risk of stroke, heart disease, and other blood vessel problems. However, this is not a standard screening test. Lipoprotein (a) levels are still being examined to determine how they affect health and when the test should be utilized.

When is the lipoprotein (a) test done?

The doctor may recommend the test if you have specific symptoms or health conditions that indicate you are at high risk for artery blockages, such as:

  • A history of heart or blood vessel disease in the family.
  • High LDL cholesterol despite medication to reduce it.
  • Heart or blood vessel disease, especially if the cholesterol and triglyceride readings are normal and you are not using cholesterol-lowering medication.
  • Symptoms of a genetic disease known as familial hypercholesterolemia.
  • Had multiple heart attacks or procedures to open up narrowed or clogged arteries in your heart (angioplasty).

The test may also be used to assist in weighing the risks and advantages of taking cholesterol medication to reduce the risk of developing heart and blood vessel disease.

What happens during a lipoprotein (a) test?

A healthcare professional will use a tiny needle to take blood from a vein in the arm. After the insertion of the needle, a small amount of blood will be collected in a test tube or vial. People may feel a slight sting when the needle goes in or out. This usually takes under five minutes.

How do I prepare for the test?

The preparation for a lipoprotein (a) test is determined by the lab performing the test. Before the blood is obtained, individuals must usually fast (not eat or drink) for 9–12 hours. If there are any particular instructions to follow, the provider will inform you.

Certain chemicals can have an impact on the test results. Tell the provider if you've been drinking alcohol or using niacin supplements, aspirin, or oral estrogen hormones before getting a lipoprotein (a) test.

Are there any risks to the test?

A blood test poses relatively little danger. Individuals may suffer some pain or bruises where the needle was inserted; however, most of the symptoms will go away fast.

What do the results mean?

Even if the cholesterol levels are normal and individuals are healthy, a high lipoprotein (a) level may indicate that you are at high risk for heart and blood vessel disease.

Lipoprotein (a) levels do not often fluctuate significantly over time. However, certain medical disorders may have an impact on test results. Discuss the significance of the test results with the provider.

Additional information about lipoprotein (a) test?

The genes determine how many lipoproteins (a) an individual produces. By age 5, people should have reached the "adult level" of lipoprotein (a), which should remain stable for the remainder of their life. As a result, food and exercise may have little effect on lipoprotein (a) levels.

However, if you have a high level of lipoprotein (a), you must improve your overall heart health. Even if the lipoprotein (a) levels do not change, this will help lessen the overall risk of heart and blood vessel disorders.

The physician may recommend the following:

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What are the symptoms of high lipoprotein?

There are usually no symptoms associated with elevated Lp levels (a). A stroke or heart attack is frequently the initial sign of this condition.

2. What is the danger level of lipoprotein?

If the Lp(a) level is more than 50 mg/dL (100 nmol/L), individuals are more likely to suffer from stroke or heart attack.

3. What is the difference between lipoprotein and cholesterol?

Cholesterol circulates in the blood on proteins known as "lipoproteins." Lipoproteins are proteins that help cholesterol move across the body. Most of the body's cholesterol is made up of LDL (low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol, generally known as "bad" cholesterol.

4. Does stress increase lipoprotein?

According to the study, psychological stress increased triglycerides, LDL while reducing HDL.

5. Should you fast before a lipoprotein test?

The preparation for a lipoprotein (a) test is determined by the lab performing the test. Before the blood is drawn, individuals must fast for 9 to 12 hours (no eating or drinking). The provider will notify you if there are any particular instructions to follow. Certain chemicals can have an impact on your test results.

6. Does lipoprotein change over time?

Lp(a) levels do not alter over time because the genes determine them, and they are typically untouched by food, lifestyle, or surroundings. This means that once your Lp(a) level has been determined, you should not need to have it checked again.

7. What causes lipoprotein in the blood?

The cholesterol in the blood originates from two sources: the meals you eat and the liver. The liver produces all the cholesterol that the body needs. Lipoproteins are spherical particles that carry cholesterol and other lipids through the bloodstream.

8. Can you live a long life with high lipoprotein?

Another study of patients with documented coronary heart disease found no evidence of an association between high Lp(a) levels and all-cause mortality.

9. What is the importance of lipoprotein?

Lipoproteins carry cholesterol and triglycerides to cells in the body. HDL (good cholesterol) gets rid of LDL, the bad cholesterol that clogs arteries. A gene causes high levels of lipoprotein (a) or LP(a), which narrows arteries. A lipid blood test measures lipoprotein levels.

10. What is the cost of a lipoprotein test?

The cost of lipoprotein is approximately Rs. 470/-.