WHAT IS A LIPOPROTEIN (A) BLOOD TEST?
The Lipoprotein (a) test consists of a blood test to measure LPa levels.
AM I REQUIRED TO FAST FOR THIS LAB TEST?
WHAT IS THE PRICE OF A LP(a) LAB TEST?
*Price may vary by location – contact your local ANY LAB TEST NOW®
Lipoprotein (a), also called LPa, has been identified as a risk factor for cardiovascular disease and stroke. The level of LPa in the blood is inherited and numerous studies have shown that it is a significant predictor of cardiovascular disease that is not related to other risk factors. LPa transports LDL (“bad cholesterol”) through the blood and may directly contribute to arterial degeneration and cholesterol and plaque deposits in the arteries that obstruct the blood flow by increasing plaque size and increasing inflammation. It is believed that LPa prevents clots from being broken down normally and promotes the uptake of LDL into blood vessel walls.
Some studies suggest that consuming fish or taking fish oil supplements or the regular consumption of moderate amounts of alcohol may reduce LPa levels. Other exercise or diet regimens typically recommended for cholesterol reduction are usually not effective in reducing LPa.
WHY DO I NEED TO TEST FOR LIPOPROTEIN (a)?
Are you at a moderate or high risk for cardiovascular disease? Does cardiovascular disease run in your family or do you have premature cardiovascular disease?
Lipoprotein (a) testing is recommended for individuals who are at risk for cardiovascular disease especially those who:
- Already have premature cardiovascular disease
- Have high cholesterol levels
- Have a family history of premature cardiovascular disease and/or high LPa levels
- Have recurrent cardiovascular disease in spite of statin treatment
- Have cardiovascular disease but normal levels of cholesterol, specifically LDL.
If test results indicate high risk, LDL levels should be treated more aggressively as LPa itself is not usually affected by lifestyle or diet. 50% of those who experience a heart attack have normal cholesterol levels.
According to the Women’s Health Study, women who have an LPa level of 65.5 or higher have a 66% higher risk of developing heart disease and women with LPa levels above 130.7 have double the risk of those with normal levels.
Desirable: Less than 14 mg/dL
Borderline risk: 14-30 mg/dL
High risk: 31-50 mg/dL
Very high risk: Greater than 50 mg/dL
HIGH RESULTS INDICATE:
High levels of LPa indicate moderate to high risk of cardiovascular disease or stroke.
LOW RESULTS INDICATE:
There are no low levels of LPa. Many individuals have negligible amounts in their blood.
WHAT TYPE OF PHYSICIAN SHOULD I SEE?
If your results are abnormal or out-of-range, you should see your primary care physician or cardiac specialist.