Patient: My cholesterol is 245. Is this high enough to warrant high cholesterol medication?
Doctor: According to the American Heart Association the desirable Total cholesterol level is <200 mg/dL. Because your cholest erol level is >240mg/dL it is in the high risk category. Cholesterol can be made up of good cholesterol (HDL) and bad cholesterol (LDL). It is difficult to comment without your complete fasting lipid profile, but I would recommend a trial of diet and lifestyle modification, prior to any drug therapy. This may include eating a heart-healthy diet, with lots of fresh fruit and vegetables, low in saturated fats, increased daily physical activity and smoking cessation. After a 3 month period I would then recommend a repeat fasting lipid profile.