Because familial lipid disorders are rare, your doctor may only suspect one if you have:
- Very high cholesterol levels. For example, LDL cholesterol might be over 4.9 mmol/L (190 mg/dL). Total cholesterol might be over 7.7 mmol/L (300 mg/dL).
- A family history of high cholesterol.
- A family history of early CAD.
- Certain results from a physical examination. These results include xanthomas, a skin condition in which small bumps of fat appear under the skin.
Your family doctor may not have much experience with familial lipid disorders, so you may have to see a specialist, such as an endocrinologist. And some cardiologists specialize in lipid disorders as well as heart problems.
Types of familial lipid disorders
There are different types of lipid disorders. They include:
- Familial combined hyperlipidemia (FCHL)
Familial defective apolipoprotein B-100
- High LDL (such as 4.1 to 7.7 mmol/L [160 to 300 mg/dL])
Familial dysbetalipoproteinemia (type 3 hyperlipoproteinemia)
- High total cholesterol and high triglyceride levels (from 7.7 to 25.8 mmol/L [300 to 1,000 mg/dL])
- Very high triglycerides (such as 5.1 to 12.9 mmol/L [200 to 500 mg/dL])
Heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia
- High LDL (such as 4.9 to 9.0 mmol/L [190 to 350 mg/dL])
Other Works Consulted
- Genest J (2015). Lipoprotein disorders and cardiovascular disease. In DL Mann et al., eds., Braunwald's Heart Disease: A Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine, 10th ed., pp. 980–1000. Philadelphia: Saunders.
Primary Medical Reviewer Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Donald Sproule, MDCM, CCFP - Family Medicine
E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Robert A. Kloner, MD, PhD - Cardiology
Rakesh K. Pai, MD - Cardiology, Electrophysiology
Current as ofDecember 6, 2017
Current as of: December 6, 2017
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Donald Sproule, MDCM, CCFP - Family Medicine & E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine & Robert A. Kloner, MD, PhD - Cardiology & Rakesh K. Pai, MD - Cardiology, Electrophysiology