What is VAP cholesterol?
VAP cholesterol is a measurement of many levels of cholesterol and other fats, or lipids, present in the body. Vertical auto profile (VAP) cholesterol testing has been perfected and adapted into clinical testing by a biochemical company called Atherotech.
What’s the Difference?
Traditional lipid profile blood tests consists of three components: cholesterol, triglycerides and HDL, or high density lipoproteins, HDL is the so called “good” cholesterol, which is beneficial in reducing heart risk and “sweeping” away the bad cholesterol to the liver for disposal. With the levels of these three lipids measured, a calculation gives a low density lipoprotein, or LDL level. Doctors originally want the LDL to be less than 140, then less than 130, then less than 100. VAP cholesterol measures a total of 15 different fractions of HDL, cholesterol and very low density lipoproteins (VLDL) by weight.
By measuring the subfractions of the lipoproteins, a more accurate detailed prediction of heart disease, diabetes and metabolic syndrome can be analyzed.
Should I Get it Done?
The traditional lipid profile: HDL, cholesterol, triglycerides and LDL, may not appear abnormal in patients who have suffered a heart attack. For these patients, the VAP cholesterol would certainly be worth the extra cost and testing detail.
Patients whose traditional lipid profile is showing some abnormal results, especially after taking cholesterol lowering medications, should have the VAP cholesterol testing done.
Adiponectin is another fraction of total lipid measured in the VAP testing. This may be linked to heart disease progression. Therefore, any patient who has had a previous heart attack should definitely have the VAP cholesterol testing in the future. Patients who are at increased risk for heart attack, suc as previously elevated cholesterol levels, low HDL levels or who are overweight and have high blood pressure should also consider this more accurate predictor of heart attack risk.
Before you choose to have the VAP cholesterol tested, if you are at risk, make sure you are willing to make the changes to reduce your risk. There is no point in having the test if you plan to be non-compliant by not changing your diet or taking medication.
Take control of your health.