Lipid testing and reporting

PathWest is now reporting HDL cholesterol as part of a full lipid profile and no longer reports total cholesterol to HDL cholesterol ratio.


What changes?

PathWest is now reporting HDL cholesterol as part of a full lipid profile.


Non HDL cholesterol, as the name implies, simply subtracts HDL cholesterol from total cholesterol.

Non HDL cholesterol is a measure of the cholesterol content in all the atherogenic lipoproteins, namely VLDL, IDL, LDL, remnants and Lp(a).


Non HDL cholesterol is a more accurate measure than LDL cholesterol in individuals with high triglyceride, non-fasting samples, and in those with very-low LDL cholesterol.​ 

PathWest no longer reports total cholesterol to HDL cholesterol ratio.

Total cholesterol to HDL cholesterol ratio should not be interpreted in isolation. Instead, absolute cardiovascular risk should be calculated.

Lipid reports contain information directing clinicians to an appropriate online calculator (cvdcheck.org.au/). This calculation requires total cholesterol and HDL cholesterol together with information of the patient’s age, gender, smoking status, systolic blood pressure and whether the patient is known to have diabetes or left ventricular hypertrophy.​ 

How to order
PathWest now reports HDL cholesterol as part of a full lipid profile.

Request “Lipids and HDL” to receive a full lipid report containing total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, non HDL cholesterol and triglyceride.

If only “Lipids” are requested Medicare will not allow the laboratory to charge for HDL cholesterol and it will not be reported. In compliance with Medicare, only total cholesterol and triglycerides will be reported.​ 

An example of a Lipid Report can be found here​.​

Page last updated: 28 Oct 2020