Blood Test Breakdown and Explanations

 

Here is a breakdown of the lab workup and what each test is checking:

 

Lipid Panel: This test checks the levels of LDL, HDL, and triglycerides (i.e., your cholesterol). These are the fats that can help estimate your risk of heart attack and stroke.

 

Hemoglobin A1C: This is a measure of long term blood sugar control and is not affected by what you just ate. It can be used to diagnose diabetes or prediabetes. In people who already have diabetes, this test is used to measure how well the disease is being managed.

 

Prolactin, LH & FSH: These are hormones produced by the brain important in normal sexual function as well as the production of testosterone and sperm.

 

TSH and free T4: These tests assess thyroid function. The thyroid has wide ranging effects on bodily functions including weight management, heart function and cognition among other things.

 

Testosterone: This hormone is necessary in both men and women for normal sexual function, but it also plays a role in mood, muscle and bone health, and even red blood cell production. In men, too little can lead to weight gain, depression, muscle loss, low libido, decreased body hair and beard growth, and erectile dysfunction (ED).

 

CBC: This test gives us important information about your oxygen carrying capacity, ability to fight infection, and blood clotting functions.

 

CMP: This checks kidney and liver function and electrolyte levels. These are important in cleaning your  blood, breaking down drugs and toxins, and keeping every cell running smoothly.

 

SHBG: This protein binds testosterone in the blood. Together with your testosterone level, it helps give us a fuller picture of your testosterone status.

 

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