Healthy Living

What’s the Good News about My Blood Test Results?

What’s the Good News about My Blood Test Results?

 For some tests, such as the hemoglobin test, normal results vary by age. For children, for example, a hemoglobin level of about 11 to 13 grams/deciliter (g/dl) is normal, while for men, a value of about 14 to 17 g/dl is normal, and for women, 12 to 15 g/dl is normal. But for other tests, such as LDL cholesterol, a level less than 100 milligrams/deciliter (mg/dl) is considered optimal regardless of age. That being said, your age and other risk factors for heart disease may influence how your doctor reacts if your blood test shows a higher-than-optimal LDL cholesterol level. If you are a man over 45 or a woman over 55 and you have heart disease or diabetes, your doctor will likely advise you to take steps to lower your LDL cholesterol if it is higher than 100 mg/dl.

 

A test result outside the normal range of expected lab values does not necessarily mean you have a disease or disorder. Test results can be abnormal for other reasons. If you had a fasting plasma glucose test and you ate something before the test, or were drinking alcohol the night before or taking certain medications, your results could be temporarily outside the normal ranges, but are not evidence of a disease. How your blood sample is handled before it's analyzed can affect results, too. For example, if the sample is collected in the wrong container, shaken inappropriately, or stored for too long or at the wrong temperature, you may get an erroneous result.

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