Common reasons for laboratory testing include
- Monitoring your body's metabolic activities
- Tests for glucose, cholesterol, thyroid hormones and liver function
- Monitoring coumadin therapy
- Screening for cervical cancer
- Pap smears and HPV testing
Clinical pathology testing is also done for
- Examining biopsy tissue for cancer, infection or inflammation
- Anemia and other blood disorders
- Autoimmune diseases (rheumatoid arthritis and lupus)
- Bacterial, viral and fungal infections
- Immunity disorders (Lyme disease, allergies and mononucleosis
Frequently Asked QuestionsQ: Why can't I eat or drink anything before some lab tests?
A: Measurements of some substances in your body are affected by eating food or drinking fluids. To obtain the most accurate results for your doctor to determine your best treatment, you may be told to not eat or drink anything for up to nine hours before having your blood or urine collected.
Ask your doctor whether you should take any of your medications during the fasting period before your test. Q: Why do I need to have some tests done again?
A: Sometimes there is a problem with the way your test specimen was obtained, processed or handled. In addition, your physician might request a repeat test because the result does not match your signs and symptoms.
Q: How can I get my test results?
A: The best way to get your test results is by calling your doctor. The laboratory cannot provide results directly to you, unless you come to the hospital in person, show proof of identity and sign a release form. Q: Can I have a lab test done without an order from my doctor?
A: No. Rhode Island law prohibits you from requesting testing for yourself. Some states have changed their laws to allow patients to order and pay for testing themselves. Laboratory Administration
Noubar Kessimian, MD