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What Is a Superchem Blood Test?

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It wasn't until I met Dr. An enzyme found in many organs and tissues. Potassium Electrolyte important for muscles. Measures average weight of hemoglobin per red blood cell. Because a recent meal changes the blood and may affect the results of a chemistry panel, your veterinarian may recommend that your pet not receive any food for 8 to 12 hours before blood is drawn for a Superchem. Cardiovascular tests Test What it is Higher with Lower with Total cholesterol Cholesterol is necessary for building brain and nerve cells, along with various hormones.

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In most cases, water can still be offered. Please let your veterinarian know if this temporary fast will be a problem for you or your pet. Also, be sure to tell your veterinarian about any medications or nutritional supplements your pet may be receiving, as some products can alter the results of a Superchem.

A Superchem panel is an important component of wellness blood work. The next time blood work is performed, your veterinarian can compare the new results with previous results to see if anything has changed. For senior or chronically ill pets, your veterinarian may recommend blood work more frequently.

A Superchem can help screen for many medical conditions, including diabetes and kidney disease. In many cases, early diagnosis and management can improve quality of life and long-term outcomes for pets with chronic illnesses. When a pet presents with clinical signs indicating an illness, a Superchem may be performed very early during the diagnostic process.

If your pet has abnormal or inconclusive Superchem results, your veterinarian will combine that information with other vital information about your pet to decide if further diagnostic testing is recommended.

Additional tests may include a urinalysis, radiographs x-rays , or more blood testing. A Superchem can also be part of routine blood work that is performed before a pet undergoes sedation or general anesthesia for a surgical procedure. Your veterinarian may also recommend postponing the procedure or choosing an alternative treatment option. Very few risks are associated with performing a Superchem. Drawing blood takes only a few seconds, and your veterinary team will take precautions to ensure that your pet is not injured during this procedure.

Yep, we know… the health and fitness world can sometimes be a confusing place. Click here to view the information sources referenced in this article. A manual of laboratory and diagnostic tests. Lippincott Williams and Wilkins. Ingelsson E, et al. Clinical utility of different lipid measures for prediction of coronary heart disease in men and women.

Natarajan S, et al. Cholesterol measures to identify and treat individuals at risk for coronary heart disease. Am J Prev Med. Lemieux I, et al. Kinosian B, et al. Cholesterol and coronary heart disease: Making sense of cholesterol tests.

High ratio of triglycerides to HDL cholesterol predicts extensive coronary disease. How it works and what you need to know. In this article we outline how it works and what you need to know. What is blood work? How is blood work done? We get blood for testing from: Blood is analyzed in a lab.

The blood is put into a centrifuge and spun until it separates. Variation in results and ranges Lab values vary for each person and must be assessed relative to other factors. Blood analyses vary based on: Cardiovascular tests Test What it is Higher with Lower with Total cholesterol Cholesterol is necessary for building brain and nerve cells, along with various hormones.

Too much of it floating around the blood is associated with cardiovascular disease CVD. Low density lipoprotein LDL This compound carries cholesterol to body cells from the liver. Overeating and most folks overeat processed fats, sugars, and refined grains , hypothyroidism, nephrotic syndrome, multiple myeloma, hepatic obstruction, anorexia nervosa, diabetes, renal failure, porphyria, pregnancy, androgen use. Apo A is the main component of HDL.

Apo B is the main component of LDL. Diabetes, renal failure, diets very high in polyunsaturated fat, smoking, some drugs, genetic diseases. Malnutrition, plant-based diets, high polyunsaturated fat diets, some drugs, genetic diseases. Lipoprotein a Lp a This is another sub-fraction of cholesterol. High levels of this are associated with premature heart disease. Not significant — levels might be slightly lower with niacin use. High density lipoprotein HDL This compound carries cholesterol from cells back to the liver.

The ratio of total cholesterol to HDL is considered a better predictor of heart disease than total cholesterol or LDL. The goal is to have a ratio of 5: An optimum ratio is 3. Lots of exercise for many years, estrogen use, low levels of alcohol consumption.

Diabetes, cholestasis, renal failure, obesity, sedentary behavior, certain drugs, insulin resistance. When triglycerides are under , the LDL calculation is usually inflated. The triglyceride to HDL ratio might be the single best predictor of heart disease risk.

A ratio above 4: The goal is a ratio of 2: CVD, liver disease, alcoholism, renal disease, hypothyroidism, pregnancy, birth control medications, smoking, obesity, diabetes, gout, anorexia nervosa, a recent meal with fat. Malnutrition, hyperthyroidism, some lung diseases, strenuous exercise, a lean body. C-reactive protein CRP A marker for low grade inflammation. Useful in predicting CVD.

Pain, fever, infection, inflammatory bowel disease, arthritis, autoimmune disease. Not significant — can be an indication that inflammation is decreasing. Homocysteine An amino acid found in small amounts in the blood resulting from the synthesis of cysteine from methionine.

Only cleared from the body with adequate blood levels of vitamin B12, B6 and folate. Elevations of homocysteine are associated with CVD. Folic acid deficiency, vitamin B12 deficiency, vitamin B6 deficiency, heredity, older age, kidney disease, male gender, certain medications.

Liver function tests Test What it is Higher with Lower with Alkaline phosphatase If the bile duct is blocked cholestasis , this enzyme gets backed up and spills into the bloodstream.

Values can help to evaluate bone health since elevated levels show active bone growth or inflammation due to damaged or healing bones. If elevated in conjunction with GGT, we have a liver issue. GGT A cholestatic liver enzyme.

If the bile duct is blocked cholestasis , this enzyme gets backed up and spills into the blood stream. Evaluates liver and gallbladder function, but is also found in kidneys. Helpful when alkaline phosphatase levels are elevated. High alcohol intake, various liver disorders, stress, excess body fat, exercise, some drugs. Liver damage, heart damage, muscle damage, high body fat, diabetes, mononucleosis, pregnancy, hypothyroidism, shock, some drugs.

Azotemia, dialysis, vitamin B6 deficiency. Damage to the liver from alcohol, inflammation, increased body fat, mononucleosis, some drugs, heart attack, aspirin, strenuous exercise. Bilirubin This is a normal, yellow fluid metabolic by-product of red blood cell breakdown that must be cleared by the liver. Bile flow impairment, carcinoma, liver disease, high levels of red blood cell breakdown, prolonged fasting, anorexia nervosa, niacin supplementation, some forms of anemia.

Exposing a blood sample to 1 hour of sunlight can decrease bilirubin. Rare and not significant. Foods with lots of orange color carrots, yams can increase the yellow hue in serum and falsely increase bilirubin levels if tested with a spectrophotometer. Ammonia The end product of protein metabolism.

The liver normally removes ammonia via portal vein circulation with conversion to urea. Kidney function tests Test What it is Higher with Lower with Creatinine This is a metabolic by-product of muscle metabolism that must be filtered by the kidneys. Since muscle creatine breaks down into creatinine, someone with more muscle will have abundant creatine and potentially higher creatinine levels.

When there is disordered kidney function, the ability to excrete creatinine diminishes. Impaired kidney function along with high BUN , obstruction of the urinary tract, muscle disease, shock, heart failure, dehydration, rhabdomyolysis, high meat diet, hyperthyroidism. Decreased muscle mass, inadequate protein intake, pregnancy.

BUN blood urea nitrogen Urea is a waste product of protein metabolism eliminated from the body through urine, feces, and perspiration. Various kidney diseases, heart failure, urinary tract obstruction, gut hemorrhage, diabetes with ketoacidosis, steroid use, circulatory disorders, high animal protein intake, intense exercise, salt or water depletion from sweating, diarrhea, vomiting. Pregnancy, liver failure, acromegaly, Celiac disease, syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone SIADH , malnutrition.

Increased ratio with normal creatinine occurs in: Salt depletion, dehydration, heart failure, catabolic states, gut hemorrhage, high animal protein intake. Increased ratio with elevated creatinine occurs in: Obstruction of the urinary tract, ketoacidosis, prerenal azotemia. Decreased ratio with decreased BUN occurs in: Decreased ratio with elevated creatinine occurs in: Some drug use, rhabdomyolysis, muscular folks who are developing kidney failure.

TSH is secreted by the pituitary gland and stimulates thyroid gland function, leading to the release of T3 and T4. TSH secretion is regulated by T3 and T4 feedback inhibition and is stimulated by thyrotropin-releasing hormone released from the hypothalamus. This test is the most sensitive for primary hypothyroidism. An under-active thyroid, advanced age, amphetamine abuse. An overactive thyroid, corticosteroid use, too much thyroid replacement medication. TSH tends to go down later in the day.

Free T3 triiodothyronine The fraction of T3 that exists unbound in the blood. Hyperthyroidism, high altitude, T3 toxicosis. Hypothyroidism, late stage pregnancy.

Total T3 triiodothyronine T3 has three iodine atoms attached and more metabolic action than T4, but the effect is short lived. This test is helpful for diagnosing T3 toxicosis and hyperthyroidism.

Not useful for diagnosing hypothyroidism. Hyperthyroidism, T3 toxicosis, thyroid medication use, heroin use, estrogen use, pregnancy, iodine deficiency goiter. Hypothyroidism, anabolic steroid use, aspirin, niacin use, fasting, malnutrition.

Free T4 thyroxine This only makes up a small fraction of total T4. Free T4 is unbound and available to tissues. Early detection is key to successful treatment. Many types of cancer cause a bone-deep tiredness that never gets better, no matter how much rest you get.

If fatigue is affecting your daily life, talk to your doctor. She can help you find the cause and let you know if there are ways to treat it.

In nonsmokers, a nagging cough is usually not cancer. Most go away after 3 to 4 weeks. A cough is the most common sign of lung cancer. Your doctor can test mucus from your lungs to see if you have an infection. He may also give you a chest X-ray to check for another problem. Ongoing pain can be a signal of many types of cancer, including bone or brain cancer, especially those that have spread, Lepor says.

Not unless this cancer runs in your family, Meyers says. Then you need to see your doctor. Problems When You Pee Many men have some problems peeing as they get older, like: A need to pee more often, especially at night Dribbling, leaking, or an urgent need to go Trouble starting to pee, or a weak stream A burning sensation when they pee An enlarged prostate gland usually causes these symptoms, but so can prostate cancer.

Blood in Your Pee or Stool These can be among the first signs of cancer of the bladder , kidneys , or colon. Skin Changes When you notice a change in the size, shape, or color of a mole or other spot on your skin , see your doctor as soon as you can. Changes in Lymph Nodes Tenderness of swelling in your lymph nodes , the small bean-shaped glands found in your neck, armpits, and other places, often signal that something's going on in your body.

Trouble Swallowing Some people have trouble swallowing from time to time.

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