Is your heart always pounding heavily and your blood pressure rising although nothing is going on? This could be the result of high cholesterol! Cholesterol is often mentioned as a risk factor for heart and cardiovascular disorders as well as strokes. But there are two types of cholesterol - LDL and HDL:
LDL is the “bad” cholesterol because a high LDL level leads to a buildup of cholesterol in your arteries. Arteries constrict, blood begins to clot. Over time, blood thickening and artery constriction combine to make a heart attack or high blood pressure more likely.
HDL is called the "good" cholesterol because it carries LDL cholesterol from other parts of your body back to your liver. Your liver then removes the LDL cholesterol from your body. This helps to keep the blood vessels clean. High HDL levels reduce the risk of heart disease — but low levels increase the risk.
Like cholesterol, triglycerides are a type of fat, or lipid, in your blood. Elevated triglyceride levels can raise your chance of vessel constriction and heart disease.
The cerascreen® Cholesterol Test is a send-in sampling kit to measure the relevant blood fat values if an increased risk for arteriosclerosis is suspected. The test determines the total cholesterol, HDL, LDL, and triglycerides levels as well as the LDL/HDL ratio. The process is pain-free and can be done easily from home. The sample of human capillary blood is analyzed in vitro in the specialized cerascreen® partner diagnostic laboratory.
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Collect a blood sample
Using one of the lancets included in the test kit, extract a few drops of blood and collect them with the dried blood spot card.
Activate your test ID
In your secure my cerascreen ® user account on our website or in the my cerascreen ® app. You will be asked to answer a few short questions to help us give you individualized recommendations.
Send the sample
Using the included return packaging, send your dried blood sample by USPS mail to our partner lab free of charge.
In the specialist laboratory, your capillary blood will be examined for the concentration of different blood lipids: HDL and LDL cholesterol as well as triglycerides.
The results report contains your HDL and LDL cholesterol levels as well as your triglyceride levels. You will find out whether your blood lipid levels are within the normal range or whether there is an increased risk of arteriosclerosis.
High Quality Standards
The at-home sample collection kits from cerascreen® will be analyzed in a CLIA-certified partner lab. All of our partner labs fulfill our high-quality standards.
The Benefits of the Cholesterol Test
Knowing your cholesterol levels can help you take thoughtful steps to improve the health of your blood vessels. High LDL cholesterol means an increased risk of cardiovascular diseases - but it is very manageable through lifestyle changes and optimize blood lipids.
With the cerascreen® Cholesterol Test you don't have to visit a doctor's office and you don't have to wait. With a small prick of the finger, you can take a few drops of blood at home and send in your sample. Experts in a medical laboratory then carry out the evaluation.
Benefit from our expertise: cerascreen® has a wealth of experience as the market leader for medical sampling and return kits in Europe, with 8 years of developing and evaluating tests. We have developed more than 50 approved test kits (medical devices), evaluated 250,000 samples, and delivered to 19 countries, and we're excited and proud to serve the US market also!
The Results Report
As soon as your sample has been evaluated, you will be able to view your individual results report in the my cerascreen® mobile app or our secure online customer area where you can also print the report.
Result of laboratory analysis: Find out if your cholesterol and triglyceride levels are within the green range.
Individualized practical recommendations: Learn how you can change your LDL cholesterol by changing your lifestyle.
Important health information: Read about what blood lipids are and how they are related to arteriosclerosis.
Frequently Asked Questions about Cholesterol
Why should I test my cholesterol levels?
Bad cholesterol levels are a known risk factor for cardiovascular disease. If the “bad” LDL cholesterol occurs too frequently in the blood, it contributes to the fact that the blood vessels become calcified. This in turn increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases such as heart attacks and strokes.
The World Health Organization estimates that every second person in high-income countries has high cholesterol levels. Many of those affected are not aware of this; the cholesterol is usually not noticeable through typical symptoms.
However, you can influence your cholesterol: lifestyle and, above all, diet affects the composition of your blood lipids. Therefore, it can be worthwhile to check your cholesterol levels regularly.
Who should take the test?
Since the symptoms of high cholesterol levels are not often clearly visible, almost anyone could benefit from knowing their lipid levels
A cholesterol test is usually particularly interesting for people who are at an increased risk of developing high LDL cholesterol. The at-risk groups include:
- The elderly and men
- People with high blood pressure
- People with type 2 diabetes
- People who have had frequent heart attacks and strokes in their families
How does the cholesterol test work?
To do the cholesterol test, use a lancet to take a small sample of blood from your fingertip. The sample is sent to a specialist laboratory in a tube using a return envelope. The laboratory then tests the concentration of various blood lipids (LDL and HDL cholesterol, triglycerides) in your capillary blood.
The cholesterol test needs to be carried out on an empty stomach, so please don't eat anything in the 12 hours prior to the test.
What does the results report tell me?
The cholesterol test will help you assess your risk of arteriosclerosis, along with other risk factors.
To do this, the test determines the following values, which are presented to you in the results report:
- Total cholesterol in micromoles per liter of blood (mmol / l)
- HDL cholesterol in mmol / l
- LDL cholesterol in mmol / l
- LDL / HDL quotient, i.e. the ratio of LDL to HDL cholesterol / li>
- Triglycerides in mmol / l
If your level of LDL cholesterol (therefore increasing the LDL / HDL quotient), this means an increased risk of calcification of the blood vessels (arteriosclerosis). This calcification, in turn, increases your risk for cardiovascular diseases such as high blood pressure, stroke, and heart attack.
Elevated triglyceride levels can also damage the heart and blood vessels and can be reduced with a balanced diet.
What recommendations do I get?
You might need to take action if your LDL cholesterol, the “bad” cholesterol, is above normal.
You will be given recommendations to help you lower your LDL cholesterol levels. Most of all, this is advice on diet and exercise.
If the result indicates an increased risk of arteriosclerosis, please consult a doctor. With medical support, you can then check other risk factors and, if necessary, initiate treatment.
What is cholesterol?
The blood fat cholesterol is a fat-like substance that is packed into certain proteins in the body, either the HDL or the LDL protein. HDL cholesterol is considered the “good” cholesterol, and LDL cholesterol is considered the “bad” cholesterol.
Cholesterol is made in the liver. The body needs blood fat to make hormones such as vitamin D, cortisol, and estrogen, among other things. We can also get cholesterol through food. It is mainly found in animal fats such as butter, eggs, milk, cheese, and meat. The more cholesterol we take in through food, the less the liver produces - that is why your cholesterol intake has only a limited influence on your cholesterol levels.
What are the symptoms of high levels of bad cholesterol?
High LDL cholesterol levels aren't directly reflected in symptoms - this makes them difficult to detect without a test.
The “bad” cholesterol can, however, over time, result in fatty buildup being deposited on the blood vessels. This calcification of the blood vessels (arteriosclerosis) increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases such as high blood pressure, stroke, and heart attack.
What causes high levels of bad cholesterol?
It's not typically primarily foods that are high in cholesterol that lead to bad cholesterol levels.
Instead, typically a combination of various lifestyle factors is to blame. Obesity, sedentary lifestyle, diabetes, alcohol, and cigarettes all play a role. In addition, the risk is related to your genetic makeup.
How do I improve my cholesterol levels?
It's not typically primarily foods that are high in cholesterol that lead to bad cholesterol levels. Your weight and exercise levels have the greatest influence. Weight loss, regular exercise, and a balanced diet are the most important steps you can take to improve your cholesterol levels.
In addition, you can eat fewer foods that increase LDL cholesterol. These include potato chips and sweets, highly processed meat, soy and sunflower oil, and alcohol.
Who should NOT take the cholesterol test?
The cholesterol test is unsuitable or only partially suitable for certain groups of people:
People with infectious diseases such as hepatitis and HIV are not allowed to take the cholesterol test.
People with hemophilia should not take the blood test.
Pregnant and breastfeeding women should only perform the cholesterol test under medical supervision. The reference values and recommendations do not apply to them either, so they should obtain recommendations on the test results from your doctor or therapist.
The cholesterol test is not suitable for children under 18 years of age.