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Quality Health Care and You - Diabetes

Cholesterol Control

What it is

Everyone has a certain amount of cholesterol - and it's not always a bad thing. Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance found in all the cells of the body, including blood. There are two kinds of lipoproteins which carry cholesterol through your body: LDL (Low-Density Lipoproteins) or "bad cholesterol" and HDL (High-Density Lipoproteins) or "good cholesterol".

How it Relates to Diabetes

Diabetics tend to have more cholesterol abnormalities. These variances can increase your risk for cardiovascular disease. By managing your cholesterol, especially lowering LDL cholesterol, you reduce your chance of developing cardiovascular disease and early death. In fact, diabetics who lower their LDL cholesterol can reduce their risk of heart attack by up to 42 percent!

The Quality Standard - How to Know You're Okay

Your health care provider should check your blood fat levels at least once a year. Here's what the results should say:

Sometimes diet and exercise aren't enough to bring cholesterol back to normal, and medication may be needed. Statin drugs are one way your health care provider may try to lower your LDL if it is too high.

What You Can Do

Talk to your doctor about getting your blood cholesterol checked and making sure that it’s in control. He or she may suggest the use of statin drugs. Increasing physical activity and healthy food choices are also important to keep your cholesterol in the right range.

To Learn More

Hope Through Research - You Can Be Part of the Answer!

Many research studies are underway to help us learn about eye diseases. Would you like to find out more about being part of this exciting research? Please visit the following links:

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This article is a NetWellness exclusive.

Last Reviewed: Dec 07, 2012

David C Aron, MD, MS David C Aron, MD, MS
Professor of Medicine
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University

Bette K Idemoto, PhD, RN, ACNS-BC, CCRN Bette K Idemoto, PhD, RN, ACNS-BC, CCRN
Clinical Nurse Specialist
Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing
Case Western Reserve University