Millions of laboratory and x-ray tests are performed every year to diagnose symptoms and conditions. They can be used effectively to determine a patient’s overall condition of health, from broken bones to inflammation. X-rays are also commonly performed in dentist’s offices, to examine the health of teeth and detect tooth decay.
What are laboratory tests?
Clinical laboratory tests use chemical processes to measure levels of components in body fluids and tissues. The most common specimens used in clinical laboratory tests are blood and urine.
Several different tests exist to determine and quantify almost any type of chemical component in urine or blood. Components may include electrolytes, blood glucose, hormones, enzymes, lipids, and proteins.
Listed below are some of the more common laboratory tests:
- Urine test
- Blood tests
- Tumor markers
When should I get lavatory testing done?
Your general practitioner or another healthcare professional may ask you for a stool or urine sample to help them diagnose or rule out a particular health condition. Feces contains bacteria and other substances that are in the digestive system. By testing the levels of these substances and bacteria in your feces, it is possible to determine what is happening in your digestive system. The sample can be tested to help diagnose the following conditions:
- Gastroenteritis — a common condition that causes diarrhea and vomiting, and is usually the result of a bacterial or viral stomach bug
- Inflammatory Bowel Disease — a condition that causes inflammation of the lining of the digestive system, such as Crohn’s disease
- Ulcerative Colitis — a condition where the rectum and colon become inflamed
What are X rays used for?
X rays are a form of electromagnetic radiation that can pass through the human body and produce images of bones and other organs. The images can reveal signs of injury and disease.
X rays are commonly used in procedures such as:
- radiography, which produces a still X ray image;
- fluoroscopy, which enables the examination of motion within the body and certain diagnostic and treatment procedures;
- computed tomography, which produces more detailed still images.
While the body absorbs some of the X rays’ energy, the doses of radiation are very low and any that are absorbed during imaging procedures generally produce no adverse effects. However, it is still recommended to minimize the doses as much as possible. Very large doses of radiation are utilized in radiation oncology to stop the multiplication of cancer cells.
When would you need an x-ray?
This test is very common. Millions of x-ray examinations are performed every year in the US. Some of the many uses include:
- Diagnosis of fractures –- detection of broken bones is among the most common uses of x-rays
- Diagnosis of dislocations –- an x-ray examination can determine if the bones of a joint are atypically positioned
- As a surgical tool — to help the surgeon precisely perform the operation. X-ray images taken during surgery show if the fracture is aligned or not, or if the implanted device is in the correct For similar purposes, X-rays may also be used in other surgical procedures.
- Diagnosis of bone or joint conditions — X-rays are able to detect some types of cancer, arthritis or osteoporosis
- Diagnosis of chest conditions — X-rays can detect diseases such as pneumonia, lung cancer, emphysema or heart failure
- Detection of foreign objects — Used in the detection of metal fragments or swallowed objects.
If you or someone you know is in need of an x-ray, or believe they can benefit from an x-ray, come to Hometown Urgent Care, where our team of professional and caring staff can help you diagnose your symptoms! To get in touch with a specialist, contact our office today. Visit us online or give us a call to book an appointment!