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Cholesterol Testing Crucial to Good Health

The outcome is other than a needle stick away; in addition to it is one of good number important tests in the medical store. Nevertheless one in six American adults -- 36 million people -- are from top to bottom oblivious regarding their cholesterol.

That is how a lot of have by no means had their cholesterol checked, according to a study released today from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), an office of the Department of Health and Human Services.

The course of action is clear: The federal agency recommends each one 20 and older have their cholesterol checked at least every five years to assess their risk of heart attack, stroke or circulatory disease. British researchers suggested last month that children as young as 15 months are tested to help predict their risk of heart disease later in life.

Many people, on the other hand, do not bother.

The nastiest offenders were the young: 40 percent of those ages 20 to 34 have not had the simple blood test, which detects the existence of potentially damaging lipids -- fatty substances -- in their blood. A third of uninsured people of all ages have not been screened, beside with 21 percent of people who did not complete high school. The figure was 14 percent among those who had at least some college.

Background certainly plays a role. One-fourth of all Hispanic adults have not had their cholesterol tested, all along with 16 percent each of black and Asian adults. The number is 15 percent among whites. Men are far more dilapidated in their duties than are women. The study establish that a fifth of all men have deserted to get their cholesterol checked, compared with 14 percent of women.

Why do people skip the test? The American Heart Association has assembled a record of misconceptions about cholesterol, which may swing their accepted wisdom.

Many folks feel that thin people and women are one way or another "protected" from high cholesterol or that it is just a state of middle or old age.

"Have your cholesterol checked regularly regardless of your weight, physical activity and diet," the group advises.

Cholesterol test is not until the end of time a main concern. Eight out of 10 American women, for example, know how a great deal they weighed in high school, yet less than a third is acquainted with their cholesterol number, according to a study of more than 500 women released in August by the District-based Society for Women's Health Research.

Insurance is not necessarily a factor either, according to the AHRQ analysis: 22 percent, who have public insurance and 16 percent of people with private health insurance have never been tested for cholesterol.

Seventeen percent of those between ages 35 and 44 have skipped cholesterol screening altogether. The number drops to 6 percent between ages 45, 64, and a mere 2 percent among people 65 and older.

Findings are based on 2005 data from the agency's Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS), an annual, nationwide sampling about health care, expenses and health status.



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