New Non-Fasting Lipid Testing Offers Convenient Proactive Care to Arizonans in Time for Stroke Awareness Month

New Non-Fasting Lipid Testing Offers Convenient Proactive Care to Arizonans in Time for Stroke Awareness Month

Tuesday, May 25, 2021   |   Category: Press Releases

PHOENIX (May 24, 2021) -- Sonora Quest Laboratories, Arizona’s leading diagnostic laboratory, announced their cardiac risk offerings will now use the Martin-Hopkins method to calculate LDL-cholesterol in the assessment of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) without requiring the dreaded fasting period prior. This updated equation provides greater accuracy and convenience for patients during May’s Stroke Awareness Month.  

 High levels of LDL-C in the bloodstream can increase the chances for stroke and heart disease. Despite the pandemic, heart disease remains the leading cause of death for men and women, and stroke is the fifth leading cause of death in the US.  

 The Martin-Hopkins offering employs a contemporary algorithm that results in greater accuracy in the assessment of LDL-C while removing the necessity for patient fasting prior to the test. Non-fasting lipid panels are appropriate in most patients, including individuals receiving initial lipid profile testing, diabetic patients with hypoglycemic risk, the elderly, children, and patients on stable drug therapy.  

 “Sonora Quest is the first diagnostic laboratory in Arizona to offer the Martin-Hopkins assessment,” said Kelly Wilhelms, PhD, DABCC, Scientific Medical Director for General Laboratory at Sonora Quest. “Not only does this calculation let patients eat and drink prior to the test, but it also results in greater accuracy in determining concentrations of LDL-C in contrast to prior methods. The calculation automatically adjusts for the varying presence of other types of cholesterol in the body, providing a more personalized estimation of cardiovascular risk. 

Sonora Quest’s Cardiac Risk Panel, Cardio IQ Lipid Panel, Cardio IQ Lipid Panel with reflex to Direct LDL, Lipid Panel, and Lipid Panel with reflex to LDL Direct will use the Martin-Hopkins algorithm to offer improved accuracy in assessing a wide range of LDL-cholesterol values in patients with a broad range of clinical conditions. The assessment also offers personalization of the LDL-C test versus the prior one-size-fits all option. These tests can be ordered by a health care provider or by a patient directly through My Lab ReQuest™. 

 Although fasting prior to blood draw is not required with the new cardiac risk assessment, additional lab tests may require fasting or morning specimens. Fasting may also be required in settings that include elevated triglycerides greater than 400 mg/dL. 

 Cholesterol should be checked every five years for people with low risk for cardiovascular disease. People who experience risk factors for cardiovascular disease, such as people who have diabetes or who have a family history of high cholesterol, need to get their cholesterol checked more often. 

 “As a cardiovascular disease survivor myself, I understand just how crucial accurate testing is,” said Sonora Quest Chief Growth Officer Christina Noble. Sonora Quest has a long-standing partnership with the Phoenix Division of the American Heart Association and is a proud supporter of the Go Red for Women initiative every yearThis is another opportunity for us to put those values in action and provide solutions toward improving health outcomes for Arizonans. 

 Certain factors can increase your chances of having a stroke, like smoking and drinking, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, and unhealthy eating habits. Signs of a stroke may include weakness in the face, arm, or leg, difficulty speaking, vision lossdizziness, and brief loss of consciousness. 

Health care providers can order cardiac risk assessments on Patients can also order directly through My Lab ReQuest 


About Sonora Quest Laboratories  

Sonora Quest Laboratories, a joint venture between Banner Health and Quest Diagnostics (NYSE: DGX), is part of the nation’s largest integrated laboratory system with approximately 3,500 employees serving more than 28,000 patients every day throughout Arizona. Sonora Quest Laboratories is the market share leader in clinical laboratory testing in Arizona, performing more than 85 million diagnostic tests per year. Sonora Quest Laboratories offers a local comprehensive test menu which encompasses routine, molecular, prescription drug monitoring, genetic/genomic, women’s health and pathology testing services. My Lab ReQuest™ provides consumers direct access to a diverse range of affordable screening tests that can be ordered online at or in any of Sonora Quest’s 75 patient service centers across Arizona. Ninety-five percent of all testing is performed at the primary testing facilities located in Phoenix, Tucson, Flagstaff, Prescott and Yuma. Sonora Quest Laboratories is accredited by the College of American Pathologists (CAP), which is the gold standard in laboratory accreditation, helping laboratories to maintain accuracy of test results and ensure accurate patient diagnosis. This accreditation ensures the highest standard of care for all laboratory patients as CAP inspectors examine laboratory operations.