What is high cholesterol?
Cholesterol is a type of molecule that your body uses for many purposes, such as building cell membranes and forming hormones. Your body converts some of the fats that you eat into cholesterol.
Cholesterol can contribute to atherosclerosis, or the build-up of fatty deposits on the walls of arteries. A high level of LDL—"bad cholesterol"—is associated with atherosclerosis and heart disease. In contrast, HDL helps remove cholesterol from the body, so it is known as "good cholesterol."
What are the symptoms?
A high level of cholesterol, by itself, does not cause any symptoms. But high cholesterol levels, especially a high level of LDL, may cause other problems such as coronary artery disease.
Since you can't tell on your own whether you have unhealthy levels of cholesterol, it is important to have cholesterol levels checked by your doctor on a regular basis.
How is it treated?
- Lifestyle modifications. The medical staff at Lee Health can help you to control unhealthy levels of cholesterol through exercise and diet.
- Medication. Several medications are effective at reducing levels of cholesterol. These include statins, cholesterol absorption inhibitors and bile acid binding resins.
What is Lee Health's approach?
Lee Health offers a lipid management program for treating patients with high cholesterol and high triglycerides. Our doctors specialize in providing the most advanced treatments for high cholesterol, backed by the latest research. We also offer nutritionists who craft personalized diets to help decrease cholesterol levels and wellness staff who can provide personalized medical-based exercise programs.
Who should I contact?
If you are concerned about high cholesterol or high triglycerides, contact your doctor. If you don't have a doctor, call Lee Physician Group at 239-481-4111.