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Test Code Billings Clinic: 4733 LDL (Low-Density Lipoprotein) Cholesterol, Plasma or Serum

Important Note

Venipuncture should occur prior to Metamizole (Sulpyrine) administration due to the potential for falsely depressed results.

Performing Laboratory

Billings Clinic Laboratory:  Chemistry

Useful For

An important clinical predictor of coronary atherosclerosis.


Liquid Selective Detergent / bichromatic endpoint


Specimen Requirements

Submit only 1 of the following specimens:

Serum or plasma should be physically separated from cells as soon as possible with a maximum limit of two hours from the time of collection.



  • Draw blood in a green-top (lithium heparin) tube(s).
  • Spin down and send 1.0 mL of heparinized plasma frozen.



  • Draw blood in a plain, red-top tube(s) or a serum gel tube(s).
  • Spin down and send 1.0 mL of serum frozen


Specimen Type Temperature Time
Plasma, Serum Refrigerated 3 days
  Frozen (preferred) 1 month


Reject Due To

  • Specimen received ambient

Reference Values

LDL Goal Values are based on the individual's risk category.

Risk Category

CHD and CHD risk equivalents: LDL Goal <100

Multiple (2+) risk factors: LDL Goal <130

0-1 Risk factors: LDL Goal <160


Based on Adult Treatment Panel III for high risk patients with 2 or more risk factors:

Optimal: <100

Near or above optimal: 100-129

Borderline high: 130-159

High: 160-189

Very high: >/= 190

Day(s) Test Set Up


Test Classification and CPT Coding

83721 - Lipoprotein, direct measurement; LDL Cholesterol


LCD or NCD test:  ICD-10 code is required for this test. When appropriate, obtain a properly executed ABN and submit the ABN with test order(s). See “Medical Necessity and Advanced Beneficiary Notice (ABN) Policy and Form” under “Resources" for a copy of a form and additional information.

LOINC Code Information

Reporting Name LOINC Code
LDL 18262-6