Whats The Good News About My Blood Test Results
Routine blood tests are generally done to look for problems, so if your CBC, blood chemistry, and cholesterol results fall within normal ranges, the doctors office may not reach out to you about your report. Or they may send you a copy with little or no explanation. But even if things appear normal, be sure to follow up and discuss your blood test with your doctor, nurse practitioner, or nurse, recommends the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute . Ask if there have been changes since the last test of the same type, and what those changes mean.
How And When To Have Your Cholesterol Checked
Getting your cholesterol levels checked is an important part of staying healthy. High cholesterol increases your risk for heart disease and stroke, two leading causes of death in the United States.
Knowing your cholesterol status can help you stay in control of your health. Learn about cholesterol screening and why it is important.
Cholesterol is a waxy substance that your body needs to make hormones and digest fats. Your body makes all the cholesterol it needs, but you can also get cholesterol from eating certain foods, such as egg yolks and fatty meats. Having high blood cholesterol can lead to plaque buildup in the arteries, putting you at risk for heart disease and stroke. High blood cholesterol doesnt have symptoms, which is why getting your cholesterol levels checked is so important.
Learn more about cholesterol screenings.
You should get your cholesterol checked at least every 5 years. If you have cardiovascular risk factors, talk with your health care team about getting tested more often.
Test Values Can Be Different From Lab To Lab
Lab technicians reports compare your blood test results with a range that is considered normal for that laboratory. The labs reference range is based on test results from many people previously tested in that lab. This normal range may not be the same as another labs, notes the Food and Drug Administration, so dont be surprised if you find that a prior blood test report varies from newer reports the difference could be in the lab.
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Our Blood Can Give Us A Better Idea Of What Is Happening In Our Body And Determine If Anything Is Wrong It Can Provide Us With A Detailed Assessment And Identify And Monitor Markers Of Illness Early
Regular blood testing is one of the most important ways to keep track of your overall physical health. Healthline recommends regular blood testing is one of the most important ways to keep track of your overall physical well-being. Getting tested at routine intervals to track changes to your body over time and help you to make informed decisions about your health.
Why Would I Need This Test
A full blood count is a very common test used to screen for, help diagnose, and monitor a variety of conditions. It can be used as part of routine medical testing, or to examine specific issues such as:
- exposure to toxic substances
- monitoring response to treatment
There are many medical conditions that can affect the full blood count. Blood cells can also be affected by some medications and some vitamin or mineral deficiencies.
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Full Blood Count Test
Full blood count test is a common and useful blood test that can provide a great deal of information about the state of health of an individual. It is actually a panel of tests looking at the blood that can help diagnose or monitor a variety of conditions including infections and anaemia.
A full blood count test is an important component of our patient health screens. Your doctor may recommend a health screen to investigate potential reasons as to why you are not feeling yourself. Do not worry about determining for yourself which, if any, blood test you need. This is something that your doctor will be able to determine and explain during your consultation.
Same day blood tests are provided at all 12 London DocTap clinics. FBC test results are available the same day for appointments before 1pm. One of our doctors will take the time to explain to you what your test results mean and put in place any approprate next steps based on those results.
2. MEET WITH A DOCTOR
3. RECEIVE YOUR RESULTS
4. FOLLOW UP
What Does The Test Result Mean
A healthcare practitioner typically evaluates and interprets results from the components of the CBC together. Depending on the purpose of the test, a number of additional or follow-up tests may be ordered for further investigation.
For additional details, see the tables in the section Details on CBC Results below that briefly and generally explain what the result for each component of the CBC may mean.
To see an example of a CBC lab report, see this sample report.
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Is There Anything Else I Need To Know About My Cholesterol Levels
High cholesterol can lead to heart disease, the number one cause of death in the United States. While some risk factors for cholesterol, such as age and heredity, are beyond your control, there are actions you can take to lower your LDL levels and reduce your risk, including:
- Eating a healthy diet. Reducing or avoiding foods high in saturated fat and cholesterol can help reduce the cholesterol levels in your blood.
- Losing weight. Being overweight can increase your cholesterol and risk for heart disease.
- Staying active. Regular exercise may help lower your LDL cholesterol levels and raise your HDL cholesterol levels. It may also help you lose weight.
Talk to your health care provider before making any major change in your diet or exercise routine.
What Is The Difference Between Laboratory And Point
Traditionally, cholesterol tests have been done in laboratories where clear procedures are in place for proper sample collection and analysis. These mechanisms help make sure that rest results are reliable.
New technologies have made point-of-care and at-home tests more widely available. When their instructions are correctly followed, these tests have nearly the same accuracy as laboratory tests.
For at-home and point-of-care tests, blood is taken from your fingertip instead of from a vein in your arm. Because results do not need to be sent to a laboratory, results are provided within minutes instead of days.
Laboratory testing is considered to be standard and is what doctors rely on to make medical decisions. That said, at-home and point-of-care tests are convenient and may help with ongoing monitoring of cholesterol.
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Full Blood Count Assessment
The full blood count test:
- counts the total number of red cells, white cells and platelets in the sample
- determines the ratio of red cells to plasma
- determines the count of each of the white cell subsets
- works out the average haemoglobin level in the red cells
- measures the average size of the red cells
- if required, reviews the blood cells under a microscope .
How Is A Total Cholesterol Test Different From A Direct Ldl Test
A total cholesterol test does not differentiate between good and bad cholesterol, but the bad LDL cholesterol plays an important role in determining cardiovascular disease risk.
In a standard lipid panel, LDL is calculated based on the levels of other fat molecules. However, in some cases, those calculations can be thrown off, especially if a person has high levels of triglycerides. A direct LDL test avoids the need for calculation by measuring LDL specifically.
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How Is A Total Cholesterol Test Different From An Hdl Test
HDL is a type of cholesterol that is often referred to as good cholesterol. While HDL is included in total cholesterol, an HDL test measures the amount of this specific kind of cholesterol in the blood.
Total cholesterol and HDL are minimally affected by recent food consumption, so non-fasting cholesterol tests frequently include these two measurements. In some people, these measurements are sufficient to calculate a persons level of bad cholesterol.
My Cbc Report Includes A Result For Immature Platelet Fraction What Is It
IPF is the relative number of newly released young platelets in the blood. Platelets are produced in the bone marrow and are normally not released into the bloodstream until they have matured. When platelet numbers in the blood are low , it stimulates the bone marrow to produce platelets faster. When the need is great and when production cannot keep up with âdemand,â then an increased number of young platelets will be present in the bloodstream.
This IPF test result would be one of the values reported when blood is evaluated using an automated hematology analyzer. The IPF may be used to help a healthcare provider determine the likely cause of your thrombocytopenia:
- A low IPF suggests a decrease in platelet production by the bone marrow.
- A high IPF suggests an increased loss of platelets in peripheral blood.
Lab test results including platelet count and IPF can also help determine if you need a platelet transfusion and help monitor bone marrow recovery, such as after a bone marrow transplant. Other uses are being studied and the testâs ultimate clinical utility has not yet been well determined.
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What Happens During A Blood Test
A blood test usually involves taking a blood sample from a blood vessel in your arm.
The arm is a convenient part of the body to use because it can be easily uncovered. The usual place for a sample to be taken from is the inside of the elbow or wrist, where the veins are relatively close to the surface.
Blood samples from children are often taken from the back of the hand. Their skin may be numbed with a special spray or cream before the sample is taken.
A tight band is usually put around your upper arm. This squeezes the arm, temporarily slowing down the flow of blood and causing the vein to swell. This makes it easier for a sample to be taken.
Before taking the sample, the doctor or nurse may clean the area of skin with an antiseptic wipe.
A needle attached to a syringe or special container is inserted into the vein. The syringe is used to draw out a sample of your blood. You may feel a slight pricking or scratching sensation as the needle goes in, but it shouldn’t be painful. If you don’t like needles and blood, tell the person who is taking the sample so they can make you more comfortable.
When the sample has been taken, the needle will be removed. Pressure is applied to the skin for a few minutes using a cotton-wool pad. A plaster may be put on the small wound to keep it clean.
What Are Blood Tests
Blood tests help doctors check for certain diseases and conditions. They also help check the function of your organs and show how well treatments are working.
Specifically, blood tests can help doctors:
- Evaluate how well organssuch as the kidneys, liver, thyroid, and heartare working
- Diagnose diseases and conditions such as cancer, HIV/AIDS, diabetes, , and
- Find out whether you have risk factors for heart disease
- Check whether medicines you’re taking are working
- Assess how well your blood is clotting
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What Is A Cholesterol Test Used For
A cholesterol test is a useful tool to assess the risk of heart disease including heart attack and stroke.
The test is used to measure and analyze the amount of fats in the blood. If there is too much cholesterol in the blood, treatment can be started to lower cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease.
Is There Anything Else I Should Know
Many different conditions can result in increases or decreases in blood cell populations. Some of these conditions may require treatment, while others may resolve on their own.
Recent blood transfusions affect the results of the CBC.
Normal reference CBC values for babies and children are different from adults. The laboratory will supply the reference intervals for various age groups, and a healthcare practitioner will take these into consideration when interpreting data.
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Can Fbc Test Results Provide A Diagnosis Of A Condition
On its own, FBC test results cannot usually provide a definitive diagnosis of a condition, but they can provide important clues about possible problems with your health.
- Low haemoglobin indicates anaemia, which has a number of possible causes, including iron deficiency, internal bleeding or a poor diet.
- High haemoglobin may be caused by an underlying lung disease or problems with your bone marrow.
- A low white blood cell count may be genetic and of no significance, but could also be caused by problems with your bone marrow, or a viral infection.
- A high white blood cell count is usually suggestive of an infection somewhere in your body however, rarely it can be a sign of more serious illness.
- A low platelet count may be caused by a viral infection or an autoimmune condition .
- A high platelet count may be caused by inflammatory conditions, infection or a problem with your bone marrow.
When Is It Ordered
The CBC is a very common test. You may have a CBC performed when you have a routine health examination.
A CBC may be ordered when you are ill and/or have signs and symptoms that may be related to conditions that affect blood cells. The test may be ordered when you have fatigue or weakness, or easy bruising or bleeding, or when you have signs and symptoms suggesting an infection or inflammation, to name a few examples.
When you have been diagnosed with a disease known to affect blood cells, a CBC will often be ordered on a regular basis to monitor the status of your disease/condition. Likewise, if you are being treated for a blood-related disorder, then a CBC may be performed frequently to determine if the treatment is effective.
Some therapies, such as chemotherapy, can affect bone marrow production of cells. Some medications can decrease WBC counts overall. A CBC may be ordered on a regular basis to monitor these drug treatments.
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Normal May Or May Not Vary By Age
For some tests, such as the hemoglobin test, normal results vary by age. For children, for example, a hemoglobin level of about 11 to 13 grams/deciliter is normal, while for men, a value of about 14 to 17 g/dl is normal, and for women, 12 to 15 g/dl is normal. But for other tests, such as LDL cholesterol, a level less than 100 milligrams/deciliter is considered optimal regardless of age. That being said, your age and other risk factors for heart disease may influence how your doctor reacts if your blood test shows a higher-than-optimal LDL cholesterol level. If you are a man over 45 or a woman over 55 and you have heart disease or diabetes, your doctor will likely advise you to take steps to lower your LDL cholesterol if it is higher than 100 mg/dl.
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How Is It Used
Non-high-density lipoprotein cholesterol may be calculated and reported as part of a lipid profile to help determine an individuals risk of heart disease. Results of non-HDL-C and other components of the lipid profile may be considered along with other known risk factors of heart disease to develop a plan of treatment and follow-up if there is intermediate or high risk. Treatment options may include lifestyle changes such as diet or exercise programs or lipid-lowering drugs such as statins. The components of the lipid profile may also be used to monitor the effectiveness of treatment once it is initiated.
How Often Should I Get Routine Blood Work
Your doctor will typically recommend that you get routine blood work at least once a year, around the same time as your yearly physical.
But this is the bare minimum. There are several major reasons you may want to get blood tests more often than that:
- Youre experiencing unusual, persistent symptoms. These could include anything from fatigue to abnormal weight gain to new pain.
- You want to optimize your health. Knowing levels of various blood components, such as HDL and LDL cholesterol, can allow you to tweak your diet or fitness plan to minimize unhealthy habits . This can also maximize the nutrients you put in your body and more.
- You want to reduce your risk of disease or complications. Regular blood tests can catch the warning signs of almost any disease early. Many heart, lung, and kidney conditions can be diagnosed using blood tests.
Talk to your doctor first if you want to get certain tests more often than once a year.
Some other tests that you may want include:
- enzyme markers if youre at risk for cancer or other conditions like liver cirrhosis, stroke, or celiac disease
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