At a Glance
Why Get Tested?
To assess the risk of developing heart disease
When to Get Tested?
As part of a lipid profile during a medical examination or if you are being treated for high triglycerides
A blood sample drawn from a vein
Test Preparation Needed?
The test for triglycerides should be done when you are fasting
The Test Sample
What is being tested?
This test measures the amount of triglycerides in your blood. Triglycerides are the body's storage form for fat. Most triglycerides are found in adipose (fat) tissue. Some triglycerides circulate in the blood to provide fuel for muscles to work. Extra triglycerides are found in the blood after eating a meal — when fat is being sent from the gut to adipose tissue for storage. Ideally, the test for triglycerides should be done when you are fasting and no extra triglycerides from a recent meal are present.
How is the sample collected for testing?
The test for triglycerides uses a blood sample. Most often, the blood sample is collected using a needle to collect blood from a vein.
Is any test preparation needed to ensure the quality of the sample?
The test for triglycerides should be done when you are fasting. For 10 to 16 hours before the test, only water is permitted. In addition, alcohol should not be consumed for the 24 hours just before the test.
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NOTE: This article is based on research that utilizes the sources cited here as well as the collective experience of the Lab Tests Online Editorial Review Board. This article is periodically reviewed by the Editorial Board and may be updated as a result of the review. Any new sources cited will be added to the list and distinguished from the original sources used.