What is the Total Cholesterol/HDL Ratio?
Total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, cholesterol HDL ratio, cholesterol panel
What is this test?
This group of tests measures the amount of cholesterol and triglycerides in your blood.
Cholesterol and triglycerides are fats (lipids). This panel measures:
- Total cholesterol
- HDL ("good") cholesterol
- LDL ("bad") cholesterol
Total cholesterol is a measurement of both good and bad cholesterol. LDL cholesterol moves cholesterol into your arteries. HDL cholesterol moves cholesterol out of your arteries. A high HDL cholesterol number lowers your risk for coronary heart disease. A high LDL cholesterol number raises your risk for coronary heart disease.
By comparing your total cholesterol number with your HDL cholesterol number, your healthcare provider can get another number called your total-cholesterol-to-HDL ratio. These combined numbers help figure out your risk for coronary heart disease and stroke.
The American Heart Association recommends that all adults older than 20 have a lipid profile once every 4 to 6 years as long as your risk for cardiovascular disease stays low. You may need to have your blood tested more often if you have risk factors for heart disease or stroke. Talk with your healthcare provider.
Why do I need this test?
You may need this test as part of your regular medical checkup. You may have this test done more often if:
- Your total cholesterol is above 200 mg/dL
- You have other risk factors for coronary heart disease
- Your HDL cholesterol is less than 40 mg/dL
What other tests might I have along with this test?
Your healthcare provider may also order other tests to check for other coronary heart disease risk factors. These may include other blood tests. They may also include tests for diabetes and diseases of your thyroid, liver, or kidneys.