Fasting or Nonfasting Lipid Measurements It Depends on the Question

Steven L. Driver*, Seth S. Martin, Ty J. Gluckman, Julie M. Clary, Roger S. Blumenthal, Neil J. Stone

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

62 Scopus citations


In the 2013 American College of Cardiology (ACC)/American Heart Association Guideline (AHA) on the Treatment of Blood Cholesterol to Reduce Atherosclerotic Cardiovascular Risk in Adults, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol treatment thresholds have been replaced with a focus on global risk. In this context, we re-examine the need for fasting lipid measurements in various clinical scenarios including estimating initial risk for atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease in a primary prevention patient; screening for familial lipid disorders in a patient with a strong family history of premature atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease or genetic dyslipidemia; clarifying a diagnosis of metabolic syndrome so it can be used to make lifestyle counseling more effective; assessing residual risk in a treated patient; diagnosing and treating patients with suspected hypertriglyceridemic pancreatitis; or diagnosing hypertriglyceridemia in patients who require therapy for other conditions that may further elevate triglycerides. Posing a specific question can aid the clinician in understanding when fasting lipids are needed and when nonfasting lipids are adequate.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1227-1234
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of the American College of Cardiology
Issue number10
StatePublished - Mar 15 2016


  • Key Words atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease
  • cholesterol
  • primary prevention
  • secondary prevention
  • statins
  • triglycerides

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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