Discussions By Condition: I cannot get a diagnosis.

Test Results-what Is Normal?

Posted In: I cannot get a diagnosis. 5 Replies
  • Posted By: skeeter
  • November 28, 2006
  • 03:08 PM

Hi everyone,
Does anyone know where a person can check (Internet) to find information about test results that you have? What is normal? For example: Hemoglobin blood test. What is a normal level to have? I know that age, and weight are factors, but is there a chart or something that tells the doctor that if you are this age and weigh this much..then your Hemoglobin should be this level?

If you are having a blood tests for possible thyroid problems..Is there a chart that tells a doctor that your TSH levels (for this age and weight) should be this amount?

It seems to me, that when blood tests results come back to the doctor and he/she tells you that your Hemoglobin (for example) is normal..it would be nice to know if you are also border-line low, border-line high, maybe the test says normal..but you are so close to being low or high that this could be what is wrong with you.

It would be nice to see for yourself..what is normal..what is low..what is high..for the blood test condition you are being tested for! Does anyone know if that kind of information is available out there? Any help is greatly appreciated! Skeeter

Reply Flag this Discussion

5 Replies:

  • Skeeter, I think you have to be very careful in trying to interpret your own blood test results, since you can never be objective about yourself. But, since you asked! Try http://www.bloodbook.com I can't confirm the accuracy of all of the data on the site, but it is certainly a detailed site.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • November 28, 2006
    • 07:33 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Hi Kenn,A big THANK YOU! It is just what I was looking for. I would never try an self-diagnose, but doctors at times are very vague in what they tell you about test results. It is nice to fill in some of the blanks about your test results. I find this website very interesting. Take care...Skeeter
    skeeter 42 Replies
    • November 28, 2006
    • 09:32 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Skeeter, I just wanted to mention that if you are in the US, you have a legal right to your test results. If you request them, your doctor has to give them to you, and can't do anything to stop you other than charge you for photocopying (though most doctors don't). All of your medical records are your property, not the doctor's, including all your bloodwork results and any notes the doctor wrote about you. The doctor is entitled to keep the originals, but they must surrender a photocopy if you request it. When you get ahold of your test results, take a look at all the numbers. Labs almost always print your result, and then the range (ie, something like your result was "10", and the "normal" range is "8 to 15"), and then the unit of measure. (If you have a good doctor, you can usually get your exact number result and the lab ranges over the phone when the doctor or nurse calls you with the result. But if not, you can always drop by the office and request a photocopy of the results.) You can then take your results and do some research online as to what each test means. Though, do keep this in mind: many bloodtests are used for dozens of different conditions, so especially something like a hemoglobin test won't really tell you anything about what your doctor was testing you for. Again, if you have a good doctor, you should be able to ask them these questions straight out. But there are other places where research online is invaluable. TSH is a prime example of this. The American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE, www.aace.com ) has recommended that the "normal" range for TSH be narrowed to 0.3-3.0, but every lab I've ever seen still has the upper limit at 5.0 (and some very bad labs still have it at 10.0 or 12.0). A very good endocrinologist will be up on all the current literature, but at least 95% of doctors who order a TSH test don't have a clue, and will follow the lab's guidelines for "normal". But if your TSH is 4.5 you can take the AACE's recommendations to your doctor and hopefully get treatment for hypothyroidism, even though the lab will have reported your TSH as normal. It's never a bad idea to keep all of your test results in one place, especially if you have something like thyroid disease, which will have to be treated over a period of years, or likely for your entire life (depending on what sort of thyroid disease you have). So hang on to your lab results once you get them. ~Ryot
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • November 28, 2006
    • 11:34 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Hi Ryot:A big THANK YOU to you too! I am taking your advise and getting copys of most of my medical records. Something else that I found out is that, when a person has an MRI taken, most places that do the MRI's makes 2 copys. One that stays with the place that takes the MRI and one that goes to the specialist that you are seeing (usually the DR. that ordered it in the first place). So I have a copy of all my MRI's stored at a local hospital, along with the diagnoses information data. This way, if I want to see a specialist at a later date, for whatever reason, I can easily pick up the MRI/data and take it when ever I want to. I had to get the place that did the MRI's to agree to this..but they said: " It's ok, that a lot of people do this"..The hospital also agreeded to let me store them there. Take care..Skeeter
    skeeter 42 Replies
    • November 29, 2006
    • 09:32 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Hey Skeeter, glad to hear that went so well! I have copies of my MRIs and x-rays at home, since I've moved at least once a year for the past five years or so now, and at least every three years my whole life. I don't know if it's the hospital's copy or another copy that they gave me, but I haven't had any trouble getting copies of all my tests, as long as I call in advance and give them a couple of days. It's nice to have one less thing to worry about when I move, just put all my records in a box and put it on the truck with everything else. Anyhow, just saying that it should be an option for you to keep your MRI films at home instead/as well, if you wanted to. Let me know how it goes getting the rest of your tests. :) ~Ryot
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • November 29, 2006
    • 09:46 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
Thanks! A moderator will review your post and it will be live within the next 24 hours.