The following list of medical laboratory blood test summaries provide a description of the test for educational purposes but it is not intended to be comprehensive or to replace a discussion of the results with a physician.
ABO Rh: Test used to determine blood type
B-type Natriuretic Peptide (BNP): This is a screening test for congestive heart failure. Any result greater that 100 should be discussed with a physician.
Calcium: This test is indicative of bone function and of the hormones that influence bone function. The presence of normal values does not exclude the risk of osteoporosis.
Carbon Dioxide (ECO2) Used as a preliminary screen for many abnormalities of acid-base balance, but additional studies are needed for some diseases.
CBC This is a count of red blood cells (RBC), white blood cells (WBC), platelets (PLT), and hemoglobin (HGB). Abnormal values should be discussed with a physician.
Chemistry Panel Includes the following;
Albumin This test is used to evaluate nutritional status, blood oncotic pressure, liver disease, renal disease, and other chronic illnesses.
Alanine Aminotransferase (ALT) This test is a measurement of an enzyme, this test may indicate liver or muscle disease. Recent vigorous exercise can alter the result. A physician should be consulted if test result is elevated.
Alkaline Phosphatase (ALP) Elevations in this value are indicative of possible liver or bone disorders. Values are always elevated with increased age and in adolescence when bones are still actively growing.
Aspartate Aminotransferase (AST)
This test is a measurement of an enzyme found in a number of tissues, such as muscle, heart, and liver. A physician should be consulted if test result is elevated.
Blood Urea Nitrogen (BUN) Blood urea nitrogen is a waste product produced in the liver and secreted by the kidneys. High results can indicate kidney malfunction, but it can also be a result of high protein diets and/or strenuous exercise.
Creatinine (CREA) Creatinine is a waste product produced in the liver and secreted by the kidneys. It is not affected by a high protein diet.
Glucose Glucose is sugar that circulates in the blood. The most common condition found by measuring glucose is diabetes mellitus, which is associated with a high concentration. Results are strongly affected by a recent meal. If glucose is elevated while fasting, please see a physician.
Sodium, Potassium, & Chloride These tests measures electrolytes. Abnormalities may result from a variety of diseases. A low potassium level should be discussed with a physician.
Total Bilirubin (TBIL) This is a test of liver function but may be elevated as an inherited characteristic or as a result of some disorders of the red blood cells. Minor abnormalities can occur following an overnight fast or with following vigorous aerobic activity. Elevated values should be discussed with your physician.
Total Protein This test measures the amount of protein in the blood. It is a general index of overall health and nutrition.
Uric Acid Uric acid may be elevated in gout, but levels are extremely variable, tending to be increased during periods of stress, apprehension and after ingestion of aspirin.
Colon Cancer Screening This test the presence of blood in the stool. A positive test result should be discussed with a physician.
Free T4 (FT4) This test measures the level of thyroxine, a thyroid hormone. High levels may be due to hyperthyroidism. However, alteration of results can occur due to high estrogen levels from pregnancy, estrogen replacement therapy or from birth control pills.
HCG Test used to determine possible pregnancy. Positive result needs to be discussed with physician.
Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) H. pylori is a bacteria that frequently causes gastritis & peptic ulcers. A positive result should be discussed with your physician.
HgA1c (Glycohemoglobin) This test measures the percentage of red cells that have glucose on them. Results are indicative of the time-averaged blood glucose over the past 1 to 3 months.
Infectious Mono A positive result indicates an infectious mononucleosis infection. A physician’s attention is needed for proper treatment.
Influenza Test to determine if Influenza virus is present. Follow-up treatment for positive results is available.
Insulin Resistant Panel The insulin resistant panel is used to test for diabetes and insulin resistance. Many problem associated with insulin resistance & Type II diabetes are heart disease, hypertension, neuropathy, polycystic ovarian syndrome, strokes, blood clots, gout, and clinically severe obesity. Any abnormal scores should be discussed with a physician.
Iron/Total Iron Binding Capacity (TIBC) This test measures the capacity of the red blood cells to carry oxygen. A low level is associated with anemia and should be discussed with a physician.
Lipid Panel Includes cholesterol, HDL, LDL, and Triglycerides
Cholesterol A high cholesterol level in the blood is a major risk factor for heart and blood vessel disease. Cholesterol in itself is not bad. In fact, our bodies need a certain amount to function properly. When the level gets too high, however, serious problems can result. Levels of 200 or more are too high for good health. Levels of 240 and above are considered high risk.
HDL HDL cholesterol is considered “good cholesterol” because it helps remove excess cholesterol deposited in the arteries. High levels seem to be associated with low incidence of heart disease.
LDL LDL cholesterol is considered “bad cholesterol” because cholesterol deposits form in the arteries when LDL levels are high. An LDL level of less than 130 is recommended, 100 is ideal and values greater than 160 are considered high risk.
Triglycerides Triglyceride is fat in the blood that, if elevated, has been associated with heart disease or pancreatitis, especially if over 500. Fasting triglyceride levels over 150 may also be associated with problems other than the heart.
Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) The PSA is a screening test for prostate cancer. Please consult a physician if the result is above 4.0.
Rapid Strep (Group A) A positive result indicates a Strep throat infection. A physician’s attention is needed for proper treatment.
Rheumatoid Factor This is a screening test for rheumatoid arthritis. Any positive result should be discussed with a physician.
Testosterone Males: Testosterone is responsible for development of secondary sex characteristics. Measurements of testosterone are helpful in evaluating hypogonadism and hepatic cirrhosis. Females: Helpful in evaluating polycystic ovaries, ovarian tumors, and adrenal tumors.
Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH): This test measures the function of a protein hormone that regulates the thyroid gland. A high level suggests the thyroid is under active and a low level suggests the thyroid is overactive.
Vitamin B12: This test measures the amount of Vitamin B12 present in the blood. It is a general index of overall health and nutrition. Decreased levels may indicate anemia.
These lab test definitions are not intended as diagnostic comments, but to provide sufficient information for further discussion with a physician. A “well” person will frequently have values that fall outside the established reference range.
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