It is highly recommended that one should do a complete blood test every 6 months. The reason for this is simply that early detection saves lives. There are many types of blood tests to consider ranging from the common cholesterol, blood glucose and blood count to more life changing ones like cancer test and infectious diseases. Today we share some of the most common types blood tests available for your consideration.
1. Full Blood Count Test
This is one of the most commonly done blood test and it gives important information about the kinds and numbers of cells in the blood, mainly red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. A FBC can tell your doctor a great deal about the state of your health. Medical conditions that cause an abnormal blood count include anemia, the presence of an infection and some kinds of cancer.
Blood counts can be used for screening, diagnosis or management of certain diseases and medical conditions such as Dengue Fever, Bacterial infections and blood related cancers.
2. Kidney Test – Renal Profile
This Profile give us a snapshot of your kidneys health.This profile will include Blood Urea Nitrogen and Creatinine which is a by-product of protein metabolism and is eliminated through the kidneys. This shows us how well your kidneys are functioning and alerts us if there is any kidney failure.
Among the electrolytes that are tested are Sodium which is One of the major salts in the body fluid, sodium is important in the body’s water balance and the electrical activity of nerves and muscles; Potassium helps to control the nerves and muscles; and Chloride which helps to maintain the body’s electrolyte balance.
3. Liver Function Test
Liver Function Tests are one of the more extensive screening profiles due to the vast number of functions that the liver performs.
These tests include:
- Protein is a measure of the state of nutrition in the body.
- Albumin in one of the major proteins in the blood and a reflection of the general state of nutrition.
- Globulin is a major group of proteins in the blood comprising the infection fighting antibodies.
Bilirubin, chemical involved with liver functions and is involved in digestion of fat. High concentrations may result in jaundice which is a yellowish disclouration of skin and whites of the eyes.There are three major liver enzymes which are Alkaline Phosphatase is a body protein important in diagnosing proper bone and liver functions and can be raised if there is a obstrucion of the billiary system; Aspartate Aminotransferase (AST or SGOT)an enzyme found in skeletal and heart muscle, liver and other organs. Abnormalities may represent liver disease ; and Alanine Aminotransferase (ALT or SGPT) an enzyme found primarily in the liver. Abnormalities may represent liver disease.
4. Cholesterol Test – Lipid Profile Test
This is a group of simple blood tests that reveal important information about the types, amount and distribution of the various types of fats (lipids) in the bloodstream. Includes Total Cholesterol, HDL (good) Cholesterol, LDL (bad) Cholesterol, Risk Ratio (good to total), and Triglycerides. Too much cholesterol in the blood is a major cause of heart disease and blood vessel disease.
The high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, which is referred to as the “good” cholesterol because of its ability to take cholesterol and remove it from the arteries.The low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, or the “bad” cholesterol, which builds up and clogs the arteries
5. Blood Glucose Test
This non-fasting test, also known as A1c, HbA1c, Glycohemoglobin, or Glycated hemoglobin, indicates how well you have controlled your diabetes over the last few months. Even though you may have some very high or very low blood glucose values, Hemoglobin A1C will give you a picture of the average amount of glucose in your blood over that time period.
While the Hemoglobin A1C is the standard tool to determine blood sugar control for patients with diabetes, it is not a substitute for daily, routine blood glucose testing.
6. Antibodies Test – Rheumatoid Factor
Rheumatoid factor is an antibody that is measurable in the blood. Rheumatoid factor is actually an antibody that can bind to other antibodies. Antibodies are normal proteins in our blood that are important parts of our immune system. Rheumatoid factor is an antibody that is not usually present in the normal individual.Most commonly, rheumatoid factor is used as a blood test for the diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis.
7. Urine test
A routine urinalysis can tell your doctor a great deal. Diabetes, urinary tract infections and kidney problems are among the many medical conditions that can be detected by routine urinalysis results. Very often, a routine urinalysis is part of a general physical exam.
A routine urinalysis does not detect drugs of abuse. A special drugs-of-abuse screening test is used to detect the presence of those substances.
8. Infectious Disease Screening
Infectious diseases can be transmitted in a number of ways. If you’ve been exposed, you want to know quickly, as diagnosis and treatment can help prevent further transmission. Symptoms can indicate a disease, but lab tests for infection are the only way to confirm a diagnosis
Among Diseases that are commonly tested are HIV, Hepatitis, Influenza and H-Pylori
9. Cancer Test – Tumor Markers
We use tumor markers to detect the presence of certain types of cancer in the body, and to monitor the progress of cancer treatment.
Some examples of common tumor markers include:
- CA15-3 is a sensitive tumor marker for breast cancer.
- CA19-9 antigen has been shown to be elevated in the blood of some patients with gastrointestinal tumors.
- CA-125 is a useful marker for monitoring disease progression in ovarian cancers.
- PSA is a useful marker for monitoring disease progression in prostate cancers.
- CEA (carcinoembryonic antigen) is useful in monitoring patients with various types of malignancies, such as gastrointestinal, pancreatic, breast, and lung cancers.
10. Heart Test – Cardiac Markers
Elevated homo cysteine levels have a much greater risk of heart attack or stroke than those with average levels. This can lead to heart attack, strokes, and blood vessel blockages in any part of the body.Highly Selective C-Reactive Protein levels seem to be correlated with levels of heart disease risk as well.