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What are some routine lab results and their meanings?

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Quick Answer

Routine laboratory results include a Comprehensive Metabolic Panel that measures kidney and liver function, and a Complete Blood Count that measures basic components of the blood, according to AARP. Additionally, another common lab test is a Lipid Panel, which measures the risk of coronary artery disease.

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What are some routine lab results and their meanings?
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Full Answer

A Comprehensive Metabolic Panel measures over a dozen distinct areas of kidney and liver function, reports AARP. One key measurement is glucose, or sugars in the body, and the normal range is 70 to 99 milligrams per deciliter. Numbers below this range may signify hypoglycemia, adrenal insufficiency or liver disease, while numbers above this range may indicate hyperglycemia, diabetes or hyperthyroidism.

A Complete Blood Count measures white and red blood cell counts, as well as other essential areas of blood function, explains AARP. Elevated white blood cell counts may indicate cancer or leukemia, while low results may indicate autoimmune disease or viral infections. Elevated red blood cell results often point to renal problems or pulmonary disease, whereas lower numbers may point to iron or folate deficiencies.

The Lipid Panel lab test measures total cholesterol, HDL, LDL and triglycerides, according to WebMD. For total cholesterol, 200 milligrams per deciliter or less is considered normal. HDL, or good cholesterol that protects against heart disease, optimally measures at 60 milligrams per deciliter or higher. LDL, or bad cholesterol, that increases the likelihood of heart disease optimally measures below 100. High triglycerides above 150 may also increase the likelihood of heart disease.

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