Lipoprotein-Associated Phospholipase A2
Does this test have other names?
What is this test?
This test looks for a specific lipoprotein, Lp-PLA2, in your blood. The test is used
to help predict your risk for cardiovascular disease and stroke.
Lipids are fats in your blood. Lipoproteins are combinations of fats and proteins
that carry the fats in your bloodstream. If you have Lp-PLA2 in your blood, you may
have fatty deposits in your arteries that are at risk of rupturing and causing heart
disease or stroke.
This test may help your healthcare provider figure out what treatments would be best
for you to prevent a stroke. Things that can be done to prevent problems include taking
medicines that lower lipid levels and making lifestyle changes.
New research suggests that Lp-PLA2 may better show who is at risk for cardiovascular
disease and stroke than HDL ("good) cholesterol, LDL ("bad") cholesterol, and VLDL
Why do I need this test?
You might have this test if you are at moderate or high risk for cardiovascular disease
What other tests might I have along with this test?
Your healthcare provider may also order a C-reactive protein (CRP) blood test. CRP
also can show inflammation that could lead to heart disease or stroke.
Your provider also might order these tests to check the levels of different fats in
What do my test results mean?
Many things may affect your lab test results. These include the method each lab uses
to do the test. Even if your test results are different from the normal value, you
may not have a problem. To learn what the results mean for you, talk with your healthcare
Results are given in nanograms per milliliter (ng/mL). The normal range for Lp-PLA2
is less than 200 ng/mL.
If your results are higher, you may have inflammation in your arteries. When both
your CRP and your Lp-PLA2 are higher, you may be at greater risk of having a stroke.
How is this test done?
The test requires a blood sample, which is drawn through a needle from a vein in your
Does this test pose any risks?
Taking a blood sample with a needle carries risks that include bleeding, infection,
bruising, or feeling dizzy. When the needle pricks your arm, you may feel a slight
stinging sensation or pain. Afterward, the site may be slightly sore.
What might affect my test results?
Certain medicines can affect your results. These include beta blockers and steroids.
Binge eating before the test can also affect your results.
How do I get ready for this test?
You will need to not eat or drink anything but water for 12 to 14 hours before this
test. In addition, be sure your healthcare provider knows about all medicines, herbs,
vitamins, and supplements you are taking. This includes medicines that don't need
a prescription and any illicit drugs you may use.