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High cholesterol - What are the symptoms of high cholesterol and other lipid disorders?

BMJ Group Medical Reference

If you have high cholesterol you usually won't know about it until you have a blood test. In most cases you won't have any symptoms: high cholesterol or high triglyceride levels are not something you can see or feel.

The only time you can see a lipid disorder (a disorder of fat in the blood) is if the amount of cholesterol in your blood is so high that it collects in small yellow bulges or lumps under your skin.

About three-quarters of people with familial hypercholesterolaemia (an inherited lipid disorder that gives you high levels of total cholesterol) get fatty bulges, called xanthomas, usually around their knuckles and ankles.[9] They may also appear on your elbows and buttocks. In many cases of familial hypercholesterolaemia these yellow lumps can develop on the eyelids or in clusters anywhere on your body (these are called xanthelasmas). Usually you only get these bulges if you have inherited a lipid disorder. They may not happen in younger people with the condition.

To learn more about familial hypercholesterolaemia, see Inherited lipid disorders.

You may wonder whether you should have a test to check your cholesterol. See Should I have a cholesterol test?


For references related to High cholesterol click here.
Last Updated: July 26, 2012
This information does not replace medical advice.  If you are concerned you might have a medical problem please ask your Boots pharmacy team in your local Boots store, or see your doctor.
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