Total cholesterol + HDL (good)
Cholesterol is an essential body fat (lipid). It is necessary for building cell membranes and for making several essential hormones. Excessive cholesterol is a risk factor for heart disease. However, cholesterol is made up of both good (HDL) and bad (LDL) cholesterol.
HDL cholesterol (high density lipoprotein) removes cholesterol from the bloodstream and transports it to the liver where it is broken down and removed from the body in bile. HDL cholesterol is commonly known as "good cholesterol". Raised levels are protective against heart disease, while low levels are associated with increased risk of a heart attack.
LDL + triglycerides (bad)
LDL cholesterol (low density lipoprotein) carries cholesterol, triglycerides and other fats to various tissues throughout the body. Too much LDL cholesterol, commonly called "bad cholesterol", can cause fatty deposits to accumulate on artery walls, potentially leading to artherosclerosis and heart disease.
Triglycerides are a type of fat (lipid) that circulate in the blood. After you eat, the body converts any excess calories into triglycerides which are then transported to cells to be stored as fat. Your body releases triglycerides to be used for energy.
Blood glucose (sugar) is a test for diabetes. It assesses the level of sugar in the blood at the time of the test. This can vary throughout the day depending on what food has been consumed and when, and if exercise has been completed.
HbA1c is a longer term measure of blood glucose. Glucose attaches to the haemoglobin in the red blood cells, these cells live for approximately 8-12 weeks, therefore is a good indication of the average glucose in the blood over this time frame. This is an important measure for diagnosing type 2 diabetes, as well as indicating how well diabetes is being managed.
It is the iron-containing oxygen-transport protein molecule in red blood cells. It is responsible for carrying oxygen from the lungs to the body’s tissue where it is released to allow aerobic respiration. This is an indicator of anaemia. Anaemia has many different causes; iron deficiency is one of the most common. This often has vague symptoms including feeling tired, weak, short of breath or reduced exercise capacity.
Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is a bacterium that infects the lining of the stomach and duodenum. It is one of the most common infections in the UK although it is becoming less common. H. pylori is most likely acquired by ingesting contaminated food, water or through person to person contact. It is estimated that 40% of people in the UK become infected with H. pylori at some stage. Once infected, unless treated, H. pylori will remain in the body for life. If left untreated it can increase the risk of stomach ulcers and cancer.
This tests whether the thyroid is underactive. The thyroid is a gland that controls all of the chemical and hormonal processes in the body, including how quickly the body uses energy, makes proteins, and how sensitive the body is to other hormones. It does this by secreting hormones itself. In some cases the thyroid does not function normally, it can be underactive. An underactive thyroid can often go undiagnosed as the most common symptoms of are weight gain and fatigue, which can be caused by a variety of factors.
Blood groups are defined by the antigens and antibodies present in blood. Antigens are protein molecules on the surface of the red blood cells. Antibodies are proteins found in plasma and are fundamental to the immune system as they flag up invading foreign bodies, such as bacteria, for destruction. The test determines which blood group you are.