Medical tests are an important part of a patient assessment. Medical tests allow to have a deeper knowledge of the health state of an individual.
Medical lab tests have different purposes:
- Diagnosis: a diagnostic test allows to confirm or determine the presence of a particular disease or nutritional deficiency. Examples are blood tests used in the diagnosis of diabetes, other tests used to determine the presence of a deficiency e such as anemia due to iron deficiency, among others.
- Screening: They are medical tests that are performed in order to identify a disease in a risk group. Such is the case of blood tests performed on newborns to detect high concentrations of TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) in those with family history of the disease.
- Medical monitoring: is a medical test performed in order to assess the progression of a particular medical condition.
Medical tests can be obtained from different samples. The most common are the tests obtained from blood, urine, stool and sputum.
Currently, functional medicine has focused on the development of various medical tests that allow obtaining information about toxins levels in blood, blood pH, presence of fungi, genetic tests, free radicals concentration, and more.
These advances allow having an idea of the stress degree that a person is suffering. It also assesses the risk of developing chronic diseases and cellular aging.
Among the most common medical tests are:
- Amino acid test: to assess the state of body proteins and the level of catalysis or protein loss.
- Blood hormone test: to obtain information about the concentration of sex female and male hormones and the concentration of adrenal hormones, including cortisol (stress hormone).
- Blood PH test: provides information on the level of alkalinity or acidity in the blood. While blood tends to maintain an acid-base neutral level, it is possible to detect imbalance that can increase the risk of developing chronic diseases.
- Bone density test: it helps determine the health state of bones and is essential for early diagnosis of osteoporosis and osteopenia.
- Stool analysis: it is necessary to determine the bacterial load and the presence of parasites in an individual.
- Fungi test: is widely used to determine whether is a fungal infection in a particular area of the body.
- Inflammatory markers test: to detect the degree of inflammation of the arterial walls. The higher the level of inflammation, the higher risk of developing chronic diseases such as atherosclerosis.
- Test of heavy metals in hair: It is used to measure the concentrations of minerals (calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, chromium, selenium, zinc) and heavy metals in hair. The result is an estimate of the level of minerals and toxins found in the body.
- Viral load test: used to estimate the burden of virus that exists in the body. It is used to assess the concentration of virus HIV, chlamydia, herpes zoster, cytomegalovirus and hepatitis.
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Before ordering a medical test it is necessary for your doctor to conduct an evaluation of your family history, medical history, clinical signs and symptoms and other important information about your general health. Based on these results, doctor will perform tests and indicate treatments to follow.