Most Common Types Of Blood Tests

Most Common Types Of Blood Tests

Blood tests are given for many reasons, but for whatever the reason, blood tests are an accurate result that will provide you with the information that you need to get well.

When your physician orders your labs, there are certain panels or tests that check for certain things. To check for different things, you might be tested by a simple prick of a finger, or by a vein in your elbow. Before they insert the needle, they will disinfect the area that’s being tested. Usually, a tourniquet is put round the upper arm to make the vein swell to make it easier to take the sample. After the test is done and the needle is removed, it is important to put pressure on the small wound for a few minutes with a cotton ball or gauze to stop to bleeding and prevent bleeding. Although, it is common to have a small bruise over the wound.

Instead of just testing whatever your doctor wants you to, I believe that it is important to know information about the possible tests that are being given. Blood test results will be known quickly, or in a few days depending on the urgency of the results needed. Results do not always give a specific diagnosis right away, but a certain result may give cause for further testing.

Full Blood Count (FBC)

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An FBC is one of the most common blood tests that are taken. Doctors use this to check someone’s general health, as well as screening for certain conditions. An FBC tests the number of red cells, white cells and platelets in the blood. Red cells carry oxygen around the body and hemoglobin makes up part of the red cells. White cells are used by the body to fight infections, while platelets are important for clotting blood and stopping bleeding.

FBC cannot give a full diagnosis on the condition that you have, but might provide certain clues that the doctors can use to do further testing. There are multiple things that this test could show. If it says that you have low hemoglobin, that indicates anemia, has multiple causes, including internal bleeding or a poor diet. High hemoglobin, could possibly be caused by lung disease, or bone marrow issues. Low white blood cell count could either be either genetically inherited, or could be issues involving bone marrow, or even cancer in the bone marrow. Low white blood cell counts could also be caused by a viral infection. High white blood cell count usually concludes that you are fighting an infection, or more rarely may be a sign of leukemia or blood cancer. Low platelet count can be caused by a viral infection or an autoimmune condition. High platelet count indicates inflammatory conditions, an infection, or a bone marrow condition.

Blood Glucose

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A blood glucose test measures the amount of a type of sugar, called glucose, is in your blood. Usually, your blood glucose levels increase after you eat, causing your pancreas to release insulin to regulate your blood glucose levels. Blood glucose levels that remain high over time can damage your eyes, kidneys, blood vessels, and nerves. There are several different types of blood glucose tests which include random blood sugar, fasting blood sugar, 2-hour postprandial blood sugar, oral glucose tolerance test, and hemoglobin A1c.

Random blood sugar, or abbreviated as RBS, tests your blood glucose whenever during the day, so it wouldn’t matter when you would of had a snack or meal. Random blood sugar tests are useful because glucose levels in healthy beings should not widely be affected throughout the day, and if they do there is an issue.

On the other hand, fasting blood sugar, also known as FBS, measures blood glucose levels after you haven’t eaten for at least 8 hours. Normally, it is the first test that checks for prediabetes or diabetes.

Also, 2-hour postprandial blood sugar measures blood glucose levels exactly 2 hours after you start eating a meal. This test is used to see if diabetics are taking the correct amount of insulin with a meal.

Oral glucose tolerance test is a series of blood glucose measurements taken after you drink a sweet drink that contains glucose. This test is mostly used to diagnose diabetes during pregnancy. Women who had high blood sugar levels during pregnancy have a possibility of oral glucose tolerance tests after pregnancy.

Hemoglobin A1c are able to measure how much glucose are stuck to red blood cells, which is used to test for diabetes. It also shows how well you’ve been controlling your diabetes the past few months, and if your medicine needs to be changed. The result of your A1c test is able to tell the doctor an estimate of your average blood sugar levels.

Electrolyte Panel

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An electrolyte panel is a blood test that measures the levels of carbon dioxide and electrolytes in your blood. Electrolytes help your body to function normally and keeps your body’s fluids in balance. Carbon dioxide is a waste product that is produced when your body breaks down food for energy. It takes form of bicarbonate in your blood, and helps to regulate the pH level in your blood. Your physician may order this test as part of a regular health check up, or used to diagnose or check a possible medical condition. If you’re on any medications, your doctor may order this test to check how it is affecting your electrolyte levels. This test measures the blood levels of carbon dioxide, chloride, potassium, and sodium.

Common Blood Count (CBC)

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A common blood count, CBC, is a test that is used to examine blood, and everything that it is made up of. A CBC can allow the doctor to see if your body is making an appropriate number of each cell, and call also show recent signs of infection, clotting, or bleeding issues. After surgery, this test may be used on patients to see if they need additional fluids or not. A common blood count includes your white blood count, red blood count, platelet count, hemoglobin, and hematocrit. An H&H is similar to a CBC, but only looks at the hemoglobin and hematocrit levels instead of multiple.

Chem 7

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Chem 7, also known as a blood chemistry, or chemistry panel, looks at the different levels of essential enzymes in the blood, and also checks for kidney function. In addition, this test also checks glucose levels, which can be used to see if someone needs further testing for diabetes. Chem 7 includes seven tests which include blood urea nitrogen (BUN), carbon dioxide, serum chloride, serum glucose, creatintine, serum sodium, and serum potassium.

 

Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA)

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An ELISA test uses components of the immune system and chemicals to detect immune responses in the body. ELISA tests are used by physicians to detect substances that have antigenic properties and primarily proteins. The substances detected by ELISA tests include hormones, bacterial antigens and antibodies. ELISA is a test that is used for food allergies, HIV, or viral-bacterial issues. It only involves a small blood sample, that measures for specific antibodies to the infection or allergies.

Cholesterol Test

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The cholesterol test is also called a lipoprotein profile or lipoprotein analysis. Fasting blood tests are able to measure cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood. The cholesterol test measures your total cholesterol which is the total amount of cholesterol that is in your blood. It also measures a high density lipoprotein (HDL) which is classified as good cholesterol, a low density lipoprotein (LDL) that is classified as bad cholesterol, and triglycerides which is another fatty substance that is found in the body. Blood cholesterol measurements can be utilized to help minimize the risk of strokes, heart attacks, and peripheral artery disease. Cholesterol levels are one of the many risk factors that can be controlled.

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