Part of what has improved healthcare over the last decade is a turn toward preventative medicine. Preventative medicine is based on the same principle as that age old saying, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” If you take a preventative approach to your healthcare, medical conditions can be avoided or treated early to prolong your life and keep you healthier.
As part of preventative medicine, it is important that your doctor run some routine tests. These tests are usually done once per year along with an annual physical examination. Your doctor may want you to have some of these tests more frequently if there are issues with the results or treatment. Here are the three panels of tests your doctor should be ordering for preventative measures.
Complete Blood Count (CBC)
This panel of tests consists of six measurements including platelet count, white cell count, red cell count, hemoglobin, hematocrit, and mean corpuscular volume (the size of the red blood cells). This panel is important for diagnosing anemia, infections, bone marrow issues, and other potential issues that may require further investigation.
Basic Metabolic Panel
This panel of tests includes testing for sodium, potassium, chloride, carbon dioxide, blood urea nitrogen, creatinine, and glucose. These tests are important for discovering medication side effects, kidney and lung function, and diabetes or a predisposition to diabetes.
Comprehensive Metabolic Panel
The comprehensive metabolic panel includes all of the items from the basic metabolic panel as well as calcium, protein, albumin, bilirubin, alkaline phosphatase, AST, and ALT. These tests are important for monitoring the kidneys and hormones, as well as liver function.
If you aren’t sure if you have had these tests run within the last year, it is important to schedule an appointment to have this done, as well as your annual physical exam. Contact us today for more information or to schedule your appointment.