Personal Blood Testing: More Common Than Ever
Not knowing what’s wrong with you can be frustrating, especially if you’ve seen a doctor and been told nothing is wrong when you know something is not right. An emerging trend is to obtain blood testing from an independent lab that collects and processes blood samples and provides you with the results directly. This is a safe way to obtain fast, accurate results. Sometimes, these results confirm the existence of a condition your doctor may have overlooked. Results usually remain confidential. The only trade-off is a little extra expense for the test since most patients opt not to go through their doctor or insurance company.
Why a Blood Test is Important
You may have vague symptoms such as a headache, stomach ache or other digestive disorders or fatigue without a specific cause diagnosed by your doctor. A blood test can help ease your frustration, offer a confirmation of a condition you suspected or simply give you peace of mind. A CBC, or complete blood count, tests your blood for signs of any abnormal condition. Common conditions that may be identified by a blood test include:
• Elevated cholesterol detected by a lipid profile
• Blood chemistry detected through a complete blood count
• Screening for some forms of cancer
• Liver function
• Allergy testing to identify allergies that are hard to detect or pinpoint
• Determination of sugar levels for diabetes or confirmation of how diabetes medications are working
• Detection of heavy metals or toxins in the bloodstream
• Confirmation of thyroid or hormone imbalance
• Immunization testing
Determining What Blood Tests You Need
There are different blood tests for different conditions. Most independent blood testing centers are staffed by qualified nurses or other medical personnel. These individuals help determine what type of blood test is best for you. These individuals often explain the process and answer any questions you may have. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics, nearly half of all Americans take at least one form of medication. Before taking a blood test, you will be asked about any medications you are taking so that your results are as accurate as possible. The staff explains the available blood tests and then narrows down the list based on what specifically you are trying to test for or confirm.
Sharing Information with Your Doctor
While many testing centers do not require a prescription, this is not a reason to exclude your doctor. Independent blood testing is done for several reasons. Sometimes, it is simply to avoid the hassle of getting a prescription for a blood test and then having to go somewhere else and get the test and wait for results. Other times, a blood test helps narrow down a cause of a persistent ailment or set of symptoms you are experiencing. While it is entirely up to you, it is generally best to share your results with your doctor. Once your doctor has the confirmation of a specific condition, they may prescribe medication that helps ease or eliminate symptoms or change your existing medication.
It can be frustrating to not know what is wrong with or to have to run to the doctor for a prescription for a blood test. Whatever your reason, independent blood testing centers are growing in popularity for many reasons including faster results, confidential results, no insurance requirement at some testing centers, confirming a specific condition responsible for your symptoms and general ease in obtaining a blood test without a lengthy waiting period.
Cynthia Johnson is a lab assistant and online contributor for healthtestingcenters.com, one of the most notable Blood Testing Centers, offering prescribed or self-ordered tests for cholesterol, thyroid function, liver function, etc. Check here for STD Testing Centers as well.