Convenient Lab Screenings

Health and fitness experts agree that if there's a secret to "living long and prospering," it's making a long-term resolution to eat sensibly, work out and receive regular checkups. Health awareness is the first step, and Northern Nevada Medical Center actively pursues higher community wellness standards by providing regular health fair events.

Northern Nevada, with its laboratory partner Associated Pathologists Laboratories, offers low-cost health checks from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. on the first Thursday of each month in the hospital's first floor lobby.

Cholesterol screenings include lipid profiles with cholesterol and HDL/LDL and ratios and lipid profiles with blood chemistry panels. Fasting for 12 to 14 hours is required for best results in cholesterol/lipid screenings.

The following screenings at Northern Nevada's health fairs provide reliable health indicators at a fraction of the normal cost:

  • $20 — Chemistry Panel (Comprehensive metabolic panel which includes 15 different tests such as potassium, glucose, liver and kidney)
  • $20 — Lipid Panel (Cholesterol, HDL/LDL ratio and triglycerides test to evaluate hormone level)
  • $35 — Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (Regulates thyroid function)
  • $35 — Free T4 (Tests for thyroid function)
  • $15 — Complete blood count with Auto Diff (Check for anemia, infection and many other diseases)
  • $35 — Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA, test for prostate cancer)
  • $20 — ABO/RH Blood type (Identifies blood type)
  • $30 — Hemoglobin A1C (Glycosylated hemoglobin. Tests to monitor the glucose control over time)
  • $40 — Vitamin D 25 Hydroxy (Tests for Vitamin D deficiency)
  • $25 — High sensitivity C-reactive protein (HSCRP, determines if you are at risk for heart and vascular disease)
  • $40 — Carotid Ultrasound (Screens for plaque/blockages in the carotid arteries)
  • $25 — Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm/Ultrasound (ABD Aorta, AAA, Ultrasound study to identify Aortic Aneurysm)
  • $35 — Electrocardiogram (EKG, Identifies arrhythmias)
  • $25 — Ankle Brachial Index (ABI, Study to identify arterial blockage in the legs)


Cholesterol is a fatty, wax-like substance used to build and maintain cells, manufacture hormones and aid in food digestion. The liver makes or recirculates 75 percent of the cholesterol in the body. Certain foods from animals, including eggs, fatty meats, butter and whole milk, lead to a buildup of fatty deposits on artery walls. Buildup in the blood vessels to the heart can stop the flow of blood and result in a heart attack.

U.S. government health experts have established the cholesterol count of 200 mg/dL or below as desirable. A count of 200 to 239 mg/dL is considered borderline-high, placing the individual at increased risk for developing coronary heart disease. High blood cholesterol of 240 mg/dL and above indicates a high risk for developing heart disease. Individuals with these results should see a doctor for a complete medical evaluation.

Cholesterol travels through the blood in tiny carriers, low-density lipoproteins (LDLs). High levels of LDL are associated with a higher likelihood of blocked arteries.

High-density lipoproteins (HDLs), conversely, are carriers which actually protect against heart disease by carrying cholesterol away from the arterial wall to the liver where it's available for reuse. The ratio of "good" (HDL) cholesterol to "bad" (LDL) cholesterol is an important indicator of coronary functioning.

LDL and HDL are two ways the body packages lipids — fatty substances in the blood. Cholesterol, LDL, HDL and triglycerides, a type of blood fat resulting if more calories are consumed than used by the body, are all included in lipid profiles.