Cholesterol Specialist

Francisco Martinez, MD

Internal Medicine & Aesthetics located in Chula Vista, CA

High cholesterol increases your risk of heart attack, heart disease, and stroke, but it may not cause signs or symptoms before it’s too late. The team at Francisco Martinez, MD, in Chula Vista, California, can diagnose high cholesterol and help you manage the disease, so you can improve your health and avoid life-threatening complications. If you’re concerned about high cholesterol, call the office today or book an appointment online.

Cholesterol Q & A

What is cholesterol?

Cholesterol is a fat-like substance that’s naturally present in your body. Cholesterol is necessary for healthy cell structure, hormone production, and metabolism.

There are two types of cholesterol: High-density lipoprotein (HDL), or “good” cholesterol, and low-density lipoprotein (LDL), or “bad” cholesterol.

High levels of HDL cholesterol are good for your health. However, excess LDL cholesterol can create a waxy build-up within the walls of your blood vessels, causing them to narrow or clog. This can prevent your blood from reaching parts of your body, including your brain and heart, leading to potentially life-threatening complications.

What are the risks of high cholesterol?

The most common and most dangerous conditions high cholesterol causes are heart disease, heart attack, and stroke.

What are the symptoms of high cholesterol?

One reason high cholesterol is dangerous is that it doesn’t cause symptoms on its own, so it’s important to have your cholesterol levels checked at Francisco Martinez, MD, on a regular basis.

If you have the following risk factors, it’s essential that you have your cholesterol levels monitored.

  • Family history of high cholesterol
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Obesity
  • A diet high in saturated and trans fats

Preventing high cholesterol is possible with healthy lifestyle habits, like eating a healthy diet that includes plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, not smoking, and getting plenty of exercise.

How is high cholesterol diagnosed?

The team at Francisco Martinez, MD, can diagnose high cholesterol with a blood test. It’s necessary for your blood to be drawn on an empty stomach so your provider will give you instructions about what you can eat and drink before the test.

Usually, patients fast for 12 hours; they begin their fast in the evening and schedule their appointment for blood work first thing the next morning.

How is high cholesterol treated?

If you have high cholesterol, Francisco Martinez, MD, can prescribe medication to lower it so you won’t be at risk for dangerous complications. Your provider will also talk to you about making lifestyle changes, as this will dramatically reduce your cholesterol over time, and promote overall health. The practice also offers medical weight loss programs to help you reach and maintain a healthier weight.

If you’re concerned that high cholesterol could be threatening your health, call Francisco Martinez, MD, today, or make an appointment online.