Cholesterol home test kits
Do you know your cholesterol level? Do you know how to keep track of it in between appointments with your doctor? Read on to learn whether using a cholesterol home test kit might be right for you and of their reliability.
What is a cholesterol home test kit?
The cholesterol home test kit is a convenient and effective way to test your cholesterol level. It allows you to monitor your cholesterol in the convenience of your own home. And, rather than waiting days or weeks for cholesterol test results, the cholesterol test kit can give you results in a matter of minutes.
How is a cholesterol home test kit used?
You can purchase a cholesterol home test kit at your local pharmacy. The standard cholesterol home test kit contains a lancet and test strips.
To use a cholesterol home test kit, you first prick your finger with the lancet. Next, you place the blood droplet on the test strip. The cholesterol home test strip has special chemicals that change colour after a few minutes. You then match the final colour against a colour guide that's included with the kit. This colour will tell you how much cholesterol is in your droplet of blood.
Some new cholesterol home test kits have an electronic meter. This meter functions in a similar way to a diabetes blood glucose meter. The test strips are inserted into the electronic device and a small computer measures the amount of cholesterol automatically. The electronically metered cholesterol home test kit costs more than the paper test strip method. The electronic meter kit, however, is helpful if you want to check your cholesterol level more frequently.
What does the cholesterol home test result mean?
Your cholesterol level is one indication of your risk of developing heart disease. The amount of cholesterol present in the blood can range from 3.6 to 7.8 mmol/litre, according to advice from the NHS, which says that more than 6mmol/litre is considered high, and is a risk factor for arterial disease. Government advice recommends a target cholesterol level of less than 5.
If your cholesterol test results are high, you should seek medical advice. A high level may indicate a moderate or higher risk of heart disease. Your doctor can follow up with more cholesterol tests or recommend a cholesterol-lowering diet and exercise plan. Your doctor may also prescribe cholesterol-lowering medication.
The cholesterol kit test results are only an estimate of your cholesterol level. The cholesterol home test kit should be used only to monitor your cholesterol level. While the test is often as accurate as the test your doctor uses, this home test should not be a substitute for your doctor's assessment.