When a physician recommends that you undergo a clinical test, most people wonder why they need the test and what the results may say about their health. This informative, accessible, layperson’s guide to laboratory tests helps you to understand the many kinds of tests that are performed, exactly what is being tested, and, most importantly, what the results mean.
Experienced clinical laboratory scientist Mary C. Ricotta, Ph.D., explains the importance of lab tests in the overall evaluation of health and clarifies the often-confusing medical jargon. Organizing the guide according to various body systems for ease of reference, she discusses:
hematology (blood diseases) and coagulation (blood-clotting)
blood-bank testing and blood compatibility testing
clinical chemistry (glucose, urea, calcium, enzymes, lipids, proteins, electrolytes, and other analytes)
microbiology (fungi, parasites, bacteria, and viruses)
histology (body tissues)
cytology and Pap smears
molecular biotechnology (DNA testing)
Also included are useful appendices that define the body systems and the array of disorders and diseases that can be detected through laboratory tests. A glossary of medical terminology provides useful explanations of unfamiliar terms.
This excellent, easy-to-use reference book will help you stay informed about your health and enable you to communicate more effectively with your physician.