What is cholesterol?
- Low-density lipoproteins carrying cholesterol - LDL cholesterol. This is often referred to as bad cholesterol. This is the one mainly involved in forming atheroma. Atheroma is the main underlying cause of various cardiovascular diseases (see below). The majority of cholesterol in the blood is LDL cholesterol, but how much varies from person to person.
- High-density lipoproteins carrying cholesterol - HDL cholesterol. This is often referred to as good cholesterol. This may prevent atheroma forming.
What are atheroma and cardiovascular diseases?
Who should be treated to reduce their cardiovascular health risk?
- People with a risk assessment score of 20% or more. That is, if you have a 2 in 10 chance or more of developing a cardiovascular disease within the next 10 years.
- People with an existing cardiovascular disease (to lower the chance of it getting worse, or of developing a further disease).
- People with diabetes. If you have diabetes, the time that treatment is started to reduce cardiovascular risk depends on factors such as: your age, how long you have had diabetes, your blood pressure and if you have any complications of diabetes.
- People with certain kidney disorders.
- People with a total cholesterol (TC) to HDL ratio of 6 or more (TC/HDL = 6 or more).
- People with inherited lipid disorders.