Lab tests help doctors in the assessment of your health. For example, blood tests and a urine test are usually part of your regular annual checkup so your doctor can look for any abnormalities, monitor certain health conditions, or evaluate your body’s response to treatments.
Your results are checked to see whether they fall within the normal range or whether they indicate a problem. If something is amiss, you may be asked to have additional tests. Let’s take a look at a few of the most frequently performed medical lab tests and what they can reveal:
1. Hemoglobin Test
Hemoglobin in red blood cells contains iron (thus the red color) and carries oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body, and transports carbon dioxide back to the lungs for exhaling out of the body. A lower-than-normal hemoglobin level may indicate anemia, which is a condition characterized by a low red blood cell count.
A low level of hemoglobin can be due to the following:
- Vitamin deficiency
- Iron deficiency
- Excessive bleeding
- Chronic illness, such as kidney or liver disease
A high level of hemoglobin may be brought on by the following:
- Polycythemia vera (a blood cancer)
- Living at high altitudes
- Heavy smoking
- Excessive vomiting
2. Packed-Cell Volume (PCV) or Hematocrit Test
The PCV or hematocrit test is a simple blood test that is part of a complete blood count (CBC). It analyzes the proportion of red blood cells in your blood.
A lower-than-normal hematocrit may be due to the following:
- Vitamin or mineral deficiencies
- High quantity of white blood cells (WBCs) due to illness or infection
A higher-than-normal hematocrit may be due to the following:
- Polycythemia vera
- Lung disease
- Heart disease
Both hemoglobin and PCV may be used to detect anemia and are measured in a CBC.
A urinalysis is done to analyze the appearance, concentration, and content of your urine. Urine is analyzed through a visual exam, dipstick test, and microscopic exam. Unusual results may point to a urinary tract infection (UTI), kidney disease, or diabetes.
For instance, if your urine is cloudy instead of clear, this may indicate a urinary tract infection. Increased protein levels in the urine may be an indication of kidney disease. Abnormal results often lead to more testing to investigate the problem.
Annual Checkups and Laboratory Testing in Rochester, NY
Lab tests provide important information that allows your doctor to monitor your health and to give appropriate diagnoses and treatments. If you’re in or around Rochester, New York, you can trust Cornerstone Urgent Care Center for your diagnostic needs. We provide wellness checkups, immunizations, and urgent care medical services.
You are welcome to visit us Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. If you have any questions, call us at (585) 207-0088 or send us a message online now. We look forward to serving you and your family!