Online Blood Test Explanation: Comprehensive Health Profile
About your Online Laboratory Test Results
The Role of your Physician: Diagnosis of human illness should be based on your medical history and a physical examination coupled with your doctor’s professional judgment and review of test results. Seek the advise of your physician if you have any questions about your lab results.
www.LabTestsOnline.org is a peer reviewed, patient centric, non-commercial, public resource on clinical lab testing provided by a collaboration of professional societies representing the laboratory community. Health One recommends this site.
Lab results are provided in the context of a reference range. The range is established by testing a large number of healthy people in the reference group (for instance, females age 20-30) and observing what is statistically normal for them. It is not uncommon for healthy persons to have results minimally out of the reference range due to medications, diet, pregnancy, strenuous exercise, or other factors. Normal results do not always indicate good health. At a minimum, we recommend providing your physician with a copy of your lab results. If you have a concern about your results or do not feel well, make an appointment to see your physician.
Comprehensive Health Profile - Online Blood Test
The Comprehensive Health Profile consists of the following groups of online laboratory blood tests:
- Cholesterol – There are two main groups of fat in the blood, cholesterol and triglycerides. Increased cholesterol may lead to arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), diabetes, thyroid, liver and pancreatic disease.
- Triglycerides – This blood fat is also involved in arteriosclerosis, diabetes, thyroid, liver and pancreatic disease. They may be elevated in the 200-400 range if you have eaten within 10 hours of the blood draw.
- HDL (High Density Lipoprotein) Cholesterol – This is the “good” fat-protein combination. The higher the value, the lower the risk of developing heart disease. HDL can be increased with regular aerobic exercise, monounsaturated fats such as olive and canola oils, and cessation of smoking. Mild use of alcohol (one or two glasses of wine per day) has been reported to increase HDL.
- LDL (Low Density Lipoprotein) Cholesterol – This is the “bad” fat-protein combination, and the lower the LDL the better. The higher the LDL, the higher the risk of developing heart disease. This level can be decreased with reduction in fat intake, weight control, and regular exercise. Because this value is calculated using the triglyceride result, fasting is important for an accurate LDL, as well as triglyceride, result.
- VLDL (Very Low Density Lipoprotein) Cholesterol – This is the “bad” triglyceride. Elevation represents a risk of heart disease and/or pancreatitis.
- Albumin, Globulin and Total Protein – Measures the amount and type of protein in your blood. They are a useful index of overall health and nutrition. Abnormal results are an indicator of under nutrition, liver or kidney disease, cirrhosis, multiple meyloma, sarcoid, amyloid, lupus, and/or major infections. Globulin is the “antibody” protein important for fighting disease. If one of these values is high, but the other values are within expected ranges, the result is probably not significant, but only your physician can confirm this.
- LDH (Lactate Dehydrogenase) – An enzyme found in blood and tissues. Elevated levels are found in various diseases including myocardial infarction, cancer, and anemia. A hemolyzed blood specimen can falsely elevate levels. Slightly decreased levels are usually insignificant but only your physician can confirm this.
- Gamma GT (GGT) – A liver enzyme whose elevation may indicate liver disease. Moderate intake of alcohol and some common medications may cause elevated levels to occur.
- Bilirubin – Primary pigment in bile. It is derived from hemoglobin and processed by the liver, and builds up when the liver is functioning poorly or when some other disorder reduces the normal flow of bile. It is increased also when there has been destruction of red blood cells.
- AST & ALT – Injury to cells releases these enzymes into the blood. Liver disease and heart attacks, as well as serious physical injury can cause elevation of these values. Low values are probably not significant, but can only be confirmed by your physician.
- Urea Nitrogen (BUN) – A waste product of the liver excreted by the kidneys. High values may indicate kidney malfunction and/or dehydration
- Creatinine – This is a waste product of muscle metabolism that is discarded by the kidney. It is elevated in kidney disease, muscle wasting
disease, and sometimes the day after strenuous physical exercise.
- BUN/Creatinine Ratio – Both BUN and creatinine are elevated in kidney failure, but they are elevated differently depending on the cause of the failure. This ratio helps determine the type of kidney failure.
- Uric Acid – High values are associated with gout, arthritis, kidney stones and kidney disease. High values can also be caused by the use of diuretics.
Minerals & Bone Blood Tests
- Iron – Values are a measure of the supply in the blood. It is not the same as the anemia-screening test, although low values in this test may help explain anemia. Iron levels decrease during the day.
- Calcium – screens for range of conditions relating to the bones, heart, nerves, kidneys, and teeth. Blood calcium levels do not directly tell how much calcium is in the bones, but rather, how much total calcium or ionized calcium is circulating in the blood.
- Phosphorus: A mineral found in bone. Abnormal levels are seen with kidney, bone and parathyroid disease. Low levels seen with excessive antacid use, gout, insulin therapy, and vitamin D deficiency.
- Carbon Dioxide – Part of the electrolyte pane used to detect, evaluate and monitor electrolyte imbalances.
- Sodium, Potassium, and Chloride – “Electrolytes” help make up the “salt balance” and acid/base balance in the body. They can be affected by diuretics or “water pills”, high blood pressure, heart failure, kidney and lung disease. The balance among these elements is
important for proper functioning of the heart and brain.
- Alkaline Phosphatase – A bone and liver enzyme. High values are associated with liver and gall-bladder disease. Expect to see higher values in adolescents and pregnant or breast feeding women. Low values are probably not significant, but can only be confirmed by your physician.
- White Blood Cell Count (WBC) - The infection fighting cells of the immune system found in the blood. Lowered or elevated levels may be associated with a disease process.
- Red Blood Cell Count (RBC) – Measures the number of oxygen-carrying cells in the blood. Lowered levels associated with anemia, elevated levels associated with smoking and several diseases.
- Hemoglobin (HGB) – Measures the amount of oxygen-carrying protein in the RBC. Significant increases or decreases can be seen in anemia or RBC disease.
- Hematocrit (HCT) – Measures the oxygen-carrying capability of the blood by measuring the percentage of blood made-up of red blood cells. Significant decreases are one indicator of anemia.
- MCV, MCH, MCHC, RDW – Collectively called “indices”, these tests measure size and other characteristics of the red blood cells. They can be used to further define the causes of an anemia state. An isolated abnormal value probably has little clinical significance, but can only be confirmed by your physician.
- Platelet Count – These are small packages of clotting materials in the blood. Too many cause problems with unnecessary clotting; too few may cause excessive bleeding. Certain conditions alter this count.
- Lymphocytes, Monocytes, Neutrophils, Eosinophils – Different types of WBCs. They may be used to evaluate allergic reactions or differentiate between bacteria, viral or parasitic infections.
Diabetes Blood Test
- Glucose (sugar) – Fasting values are usually high in diabetes. Certain drugs, such as thyroid, diuretic, and birth control pills as well as recent intake of food, can elevate glucose levels.