The doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done.
The National Cholesterol Education Program offers these criteria for diagnosing metabolic syndrome. With these criteria, you have metabolic syndrome if you have 3 of the 5 following conditions:
Central obesity occurs when extra fat tissue is concentrated in the waist area. This has been found to have greater metabolic consequences than when fat is concentrated in the hips and thighs. Central obesity may be defined as:
There is some variation in this guideline with ethnicity in relation to overall size.
When your body cannot appropriately control the levels of sugar in the blood, impaired fasting glucose occurs. This is defined as a fasting glucose level greater than or equal to 100 mg/dL (5.6 mmol/L). People previously diagnosed with type 2 diabetes also meet this criterium.
Elevated blood pressure is defined as a blood pressure greater than or equal to 130/85 mm Hg.
Triglycerides are a kind of fat found in your blood. This is defined as fasting blood triglycerides greater than or equal to 150 mg/dL (1.6 mmol/L).
HDL stands for high-density lipoprotein. This breaks down and removes cholesterol from the body. It is sometimes referred to as the good cholesterol. This is defined as:
There are a number of tests that your doctor may do. Examples include:
Your doctor will ask you to fast (not eat) after dinner the night before the test. The next morning, a blood sample will be tested for glucose levels.
These tests are also called lipid profile tests. After fasting, a blood sample will be taken to check for levels of:
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Grundy SM, Cleeman JI, Daniels SR, et al. Diagnosis and management of the metabolic syndrome. Circulation. 2005;112(17):2735-2752.
How is metabolic syndrome diagnosed? National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute website. Available at: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/ms/diagnosis. Updated November 6, 2015. Accessed June 7, 2016.
Metabolic syndrome in adults. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T113812/Metabolic-syndrome-in-adults. Updated March 11, 2016. Accessed September 23, 2016.
Reaven GM. The metabolic syndrome: requiescat in pace. Clin Chem. 2005;51(6):931-938.
Symptoms and diagnosis of metabolic syndrome. American Heart Association website. Available at: http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/More/MetabolicSyndrome/Symptoms-and-Diagnosis-of-Metabolic-Syndrome_UCM_301925_Article.jsp#.V1bPuk2FMdU. Updated November 20, 2014. Accessed June 7, 2016.
Tan CE, Ma S, Wai D, Chew SK, Tai ES. Can we apply the National Cholesterol Education program Adult Treatment Panel Definition of the metabolic syndrome to Asians? Diabetes Care. 2004;27(5):1182-1186.
Third Report of the National Cholesterol Education Program (NCEP) Expert Panel on Detection, Evaluation, and Treatment of High Blood Cholesterol in Adults (Adult Treatment Panel III): Executive Summary. National Heart, Lung & Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health website. Available at: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/guidelines/cholesterol/atp3xsum.pdf. Accessed June 7, 2016.
Last reviewed June 2016 by James Cornell, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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