Blood draw Descriptions

  • Bone & Electrolytes


    Chloride is involved in maintaining the normal amount of water and the acid-base balance in body fluids. In general, the serum level of chloride is closely associated with the level of sodium. Chloride levels higher or lower than normal can be associated with metabolic acidosis and alkalosis and with diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, kidney, and adrenal gland.


    An element widely distributed throughout the body. Approximately 85% of the body’s phosphorus is found in bone in a complex with calcium. Phosphorus plays an important role in bone formation, carbohydrate metabolism (sugar formation and degradation), and acid-base balance. Blood phosphorus levels fluctuate during the day and are affected by your diet and some antacids. Abnormal blood phosphorus levels are found in different types of bone disease and several other conditions.


    A mineral necessary for many important bodily functions, including bone formation, muscle contraction, and blood clotting. In addition, calcium is involved in maintaining the stability of nerve cells. Abnormal blood calcium levels are associated with bone diseases and a variety of other conditions.


    Sodium is involved in maintaining the normal amount of water and the acid-base balance in body fluids. Within the cells of the body, sodium is involved in nerve conduction. Serum sodium levels higher or lower than normal can be caused by various conditions, including diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, kidney, and adrenal gland.


    Potassium is involved in the functioning of nervous tissue and in heart and muscle contraction. Serum potassium levels higher or lower than normal can be caused by various conditions, including diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, kidney, and adrenal gland.


    Helps regulate energy production in the cells. This element is found primarily inside the cells. A low magnesium level in the blood may indicate severe malnutrition, severe diarrhea, alcoholism, or excessive use of diuretics. A very low level of magnesium in the blood can cause your muscles to tremble. High values may indicate kidney disorder. Any value outside the specified Reference Range should be reported to your health care provider.

    Cholesterol / HDL Ratio – Calculation

    CHD Risk, Estimated – Calculation


    Heart & Kidney Functions

    BUN (Blood Urea Nitrogen)

    The main waste product produced by the liver during the breakdown of proteins. More than 90% of the urea is excreted by the kidneys. A variety of kidney diseases can result in an increase in the BUN level. Elevated BUN?levels are also found in urinary tract obstruction, congestive heart failure, gastrointestinal bleeding, and in individuals on a high-protein diet. Low BUN values may be associated with severe liver damage, acromegaly, and pregnancy. Diets low in protein and high in carbohydrates may also be responsible for low BUN levels.

    Lactate Dehydrogenase (LDH)

    An enzyme found in all tissues in the body so that a high level in the blood can result from a number of different diseases. Also, slightly elevated levels in the blood are common and usually do not indicate disease. The most common sources of LDH are the heart, liver, muscles, and red blood cells. Any damage to cells will raise the LDH level in the blood.

    AST (SGOT)

    An enzyme that is found in the heart, liver, muscle, kidney, pancreas, spleen, lung, and red blood cells. Diseases involving or affecting these tissues can cause elevations in serum AST levels.


    A waste product released from muscle tissue and excreted by the kidneys. The creatinine test is frequently used to assess kidney function. Elevated levels of serum creatinine may indicate kidney disease.

    Estimated glomerular filtration rate or eGFR

    is a test that tells how well your kidneys are filtering. Your health care provider may also do an urine test to check your kidneys. A eGFR of 60 or higher

    (>60) is in the normal range, below 60 (<60) may mean kidney disease, and 15 or lower may mean kidney failure.


    Lipids (Fats) – Heart


    Lipids (fats) that account for 95% of the fat stored in tissue. Elevated serum triglyceride levels are found in metabolic disorders, liver disease, diabetes, and hypothyroidism (deficiency of thyroid activity). When serum triglyceride and cholesterol levels are both elevated, the probability of coronary artery disease may be increased.


    High-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol is sometimes referred to as “good” cholesterol. High levels of HDL are thought to be associated with a reduced risk for coronary heart disease.

    Cholesterol, Total

    Studies have established that total blood cholesterol levels may be independently and positively correlated with risk for coronary heart disease.


    Very low-density lipoprotein. VLDL contain large quantities of triglyceride and 10% to 15% of total plasma cholesterol.


    Low-density lipoprotein. LDL is sometimes referred to as “bad” cholesterol. High levels of LDL are thought to be associated with an increased risk for coronary heart disease.

    C-Reactive Protein (CRP)

    is an inflammatory marker – a substance that the body releases in response to inflammation. CRP levels can provide physicians with information about a patient’s risk of heart disease.


    Liver Functions

    Gamma Glutamyl Transpeptidase (GGT)

    An enzyme that is primarily found in the liver. Drinking too much alcohol, certain drugs, liver disease, stress, physical exertion, some common medications and bile duct disease can cause high levels of GGTP in the blood. High values should be evaluated by your health care provider.

    Transaminase, ALT (SGPT)

    The ALT enzyme is found mainly in the liver. Damage from alcohol, strenuous exercise and a number of diseases can cause high values for both AST (SGOT) and ALT (SGPT) and should be evaluated by your health care provider. Low values are not generally considered significant.

    Direct Bilirubin

    A specific form of bilirubin that is formed in the liver and excreted in the bile. Normally very little of this form of bilirubin is found in the blood. However, in liver disease, this form of bilirubin leaks into the blood so even a slightly high level of direct bilirubin may indicate a problem with the liver cells.

    Alkaline Phosphatase

    An enzyme found in almost all body tissues, with highest levels observed in the intestine, kidney, bone, liver, and placenta. Measurements of serum alkaline phosphatase are thought to be particularly useful in the evaluation of liver and bone disease. Minor increases in the level of alkaline phosphatase are sometimes observed during the normal aging process.

    Bilirubin, Total

    An orange-yellow bile pigment formed during the breakdown of hemoglobin. Bilirubin is transported by

    a blood protein (albumin) to the liver for excretion in the feces. Elevated levels of serum bilirubin are often associated with liver disease, bile duct obstruction, hemolytic (red blood cell breakdown) disease, and

    prolonged fasting.



    The major protein of blood. Albumin plays an important role in maintaining the plasma of blood in the blood vessels (osmotic pressure), transporting substances, and in nutrition. It is made by the liver. Consequently, decreased albumin levels may be associated with liver disease. Albumin levels may also indicate general health and nutritional status.

    Protein, Total

    The second most common substance in blood. Serum proteins have many functions, including the transport of other substances, immune defense, blood clotting, and inflammation defense. Serum protein levels are useful for evaluating nutritional status, infection, and various other disorders.


    One of the main protein groups found in blood. The alpha-and beta-globulins are produced by the liver, whereas the gamma-globulins (antibodies that play an important role in the body’s defense against disease) are produced by some of the white blood cells and plasma cells. The level of serum globulin is often elevated in liver disease, collagen diseases, and myeloma.

    Albumin/Globulin (A/G) Ratio

    The calculated ratio of levels of these two serum proteins. A low A/G is found in certain liver diseases, kidney disease, myeloma, and inflammation, as well as other disorders.


    Thyroid & Other

    Thyroid-Stimulating Hormone (TSH), Third Generation

    Measures thyroid hormone levels of the thyroid gland. TSH?causes the thyroid gland to produce two hormones: Thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3).

    Uric Acid

    A product formed mainly by the liver during the breakdown of nucleic acids. Following processing by the kidney, uric acid is excreted in the urine. Elevated serum uric acid has been found to occur in kidney failure, gout, dehydration, endocrine disorders, and other disease states. Certain drugs can also cause uric acid levels to be elevated. Decreased uric acid levels may be associated with liver disease and kidney tubule defects.


    A sugar and a primary source of energy for bodily functions. Glucose levels are useful in diagnosing and evaluating several conditions, most frequently diabetes mellitus.

    Thyroid Profile

    Additional screening that includes three levels for T3 uptake (THBR), T4 (thyroxine), and Free thyroxine index/calculation.



    Iron Binding Capacity (IBC)

    Iron is transported in your blood bound to a protein called transferrin. Transferrin transports the iron in your body from the iron storage sites to where it is needed. It also transports the iron when not needed, back to the storage sites.  A low IBC suggests malnutrition or iron excess.  A high IBC suggests iron deficiency.

    Transferrin Percent Saturation

    This calculation is obtained by comparing the iron level to the IBC level. It is a simple way to compare the amount of iron in the blood to the capacity of the blood to transport. If the level is greater than 40-50% in women and over 60% in men, a Ferritin level result is recommended.


    Iron is essential to the formation and function of hemoglobin, which carries oxygen from the lungs to the tissues. Iron levels may be measured to help in diagnosing a number of conditions, including anemia.

    Unbound IBC – Calculation



    White Blood Count

    An increased number of white blood cells is called leukocytosis and may occur with infections, appendicitis, pregnancy, leukemia, hemorrhage and hemolysis. Strenuous exercise, emotional distress and anxiety can also cause leukocytosis. A decreased number of white blood cells is called leucopenia and may occur in certain viral deseases such as mumps, lupus erythematosus and cirrhosis of the liver. In addition, radiation therapy and certain types of drug therapy tend to lower the white blood count.

    Red Blood Count

    Red blood cells are the most common type of cell in the blood and are produced by the bone marrow continuously in healthy adults. The cells contain hemoglobin, which carries oxygen and carbon dioxide throughout the body. The RBC determines if the number of red blood cells in your body is low (anemia) or high (polycythemia).


    Red blood cells contain hemoglobin, the molecules that carry oxygen and carbon dioxide in the blood. People with a low hemoglobin level have anemia and usually have low red blood cell count and a low hematocrit.


    To determine the ratio of plasma (clear liquid part of blood) to red cells in the blood to give a level of how

    much of your blood is made of red cells. Hematocrit

    measurement is useful in identifying anemia, the presence of liver disease, and red cell production within the circulatory system. (Hematocrit increases with altitude training or dehydration.)

    Mean Corpuscual Volume (MCV)

    The Mean Cell Volume measures the average size of red blood cells.

    Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin (MCH)

    Reflects the average weight of hemoglobin found in the red blood cell.

    Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin (MCHC)

    Reflects the average amount of hemoglobin in the red blood cell.


    Platelets are the smallest type of cell found in the blood. Platelets help stop bleeding after an injury by gathering around the injury site, plugging the hole in the bleeding vessel and helping the blood to clot more quickly.

    Red Cell Distribution Width (RDW)

    Reflects the distribution of the size of the red blood cell.