If you’re dealing with the medical screening, diagnosis or treatment process, you’re most likely going to have some kind of lab tests. There's an easy way to learn more about them.
Laboratories analyze many things including the health of blood cells, chemical indicators, the presence of microbes and more.
Most of us rely on clinicians to interpret the tests and tell us our results. That’s fine, but if you’d like to take a more active role in understanding your lab results there’s a website that can help you. www.labtestsonline.org was launched in 2001 as a collaborative effort of several professional societies in the laboratory community. It was designed to help you, as a patient or as a family caregiver, so you can better understand the many clinical lab tests that are part of routine care as well as diagnosis and treatment of a broad range of conditions and diseases.
The focus of Lab Tests Online is very specific to lab tests and related topics. The site includes information on the following:
Test descriptions: a library of tests to help readers understand why a test may be ordered and how to interpret the results
Conditions: a library of condition and diseases which are linked to the tests typically used to screen, diagnose and monitor them
Screening Guide: a survey of screening recommendations from leading authorities
News: the latest developments and advances in clinical lab testing
In-depth articles: a group of feature-length articles that give a broader
perspective to help you better understand your lab tests
The Lab: a section helping consumer better understand what really goes on inside a lab and the work that lab professionals do
Ask Us: a feature in which you can submit your questions and have them answered by clinical laboratory scientists
And more: The site also has libraries, search tools, links to additional information and a lot more
I’ve found this site to be very helpful in understanding lab tests that I have on a routine basis and I think you’ll find it helpful too. It is, after all, a sample from our own body that’s used for these tests – it may be blood, urine or some other specimen. The more we know how to prepare for the tests, and what the results show, the stronger role we can take in managing our own health.
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