Laboratory Tests



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Complete Blood Count (CBC)  The CBC is a screening using a variety of blood tests.  (See below.)

Red Blood Cell Count (RBC)  Normal values are 4.6-6.2 x 106 in males and 4.2-5.4 x 106 in females.  The red blood cells are donut-shaped cells in the blood that carries the hemoglobin molecules, which transport the oxygen needed to aid the body's processing of energy.  Higher-than-normal red blood cell counts would be present in those who are very fit, those who live in high altitudes and those with certain diseases.  

Hemoglobin (Hgb)  Normal values are 13.7-17 gm/100ml for males and 12.5-16 gm/100ml for females. Hemoglobin is the portion of the red blood cell that transports oxygen.  When hemoglobin is lower than normal, it usually represents anemia.  When higher than normal, it may represent blood that is too viscous, resulting in an increased risk of throwing a clot to the brain (stroke) or heart (heart attack).   

Hematocrit (Hct)  This test represents the total portion of blood volume that is take up by the red blood cells.  Normal is 40-54% for males and 37-47% for females.  Hematocrit should be 3x the Hgb value.  

Mean Corpuscular Volume (MCV)  measures the size of the red blood cell.  Larger-than-normal red blood cells are called "macrocytic", and are common with pernicious anemia, pregnancy, and other less-frequent conditions.  Smaller-than-normal-sized red blood cells are called "microcytic", and are common with iron deficiency anemia, excessive bleeding and increased iron metabolism.  Normal should be 82-92.  Normal-sized red blood cells are called "normocytic".  

Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin (MCH) measures the hemoglobin in the cell.  Normal is 25-30.  

Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin Concentration (MCHC) measures the concentration of hemoglobin in the red blood cell.  Normal should be 32-36.  

White Blood Cell Count (WBC)  The white blood cells are one of the body's defense systems.  Normal should be 5,000-10,000 ml3.  A higher-than-normal WBC could indicate the body is fighting off an infection.  A lower-than-normal WBC could indicate a diminished immune system, or that an infection is overwhelming the body's defense system.   

Differential White Cell Count  There are several types of white blood cells, and a higher- or lower-than-normal proportion of a given type may indicate various types of diseases.  Segmented neutrophils, (which should make up 40-60%), band neutrophils, (which should make up less than 5%), lymphocytes, (which should make up 20-40%), monocytes, (which should make up 4-8%), eosinophils, (which should make up 1-5%), and basophils, (which should make up less than 1%).  

Platelet Count  Normal is 140,000  to 340,000/mm3.  Platelets are the cells that help clot blood when there is bleeding.  Platelets are elevated in iron deficiency, anemia, infection, injury, liver disease, heart disease, collagen vascular disease, malignancy and polycythemia vera.  Diminished platelet count could indicate a patient having a difficult time healing from a procedure. 

Partial Thromboplatin Time (PTT)  

Prothrombin Time (PT)

Bleeding Time

Clotting Time


Serum Chemistries:




Blood Urea Nitrogen (BUN)

Uric Acid


Albumin  Normal is 3.5-5 gm%.  Too much albumin (hyperalbuminemia) is rare, but too little albumin may be an indicator of poor nututrition, liver or kidney failure, or diarrhea.  . 


Total Protein

Lactate Dehydrogenase


Alkaline Phosphatase

Serum Glutamic Oxaloacetic Transaminase (SGOT or AST)  Normal is 10-50 mU/ml.   AST is found in the liver, heart, skeletal muscles, kidney, pancreas, red blood cells and lung.  Elevated in a relatively wide variety of diseases, including cardiac disease (heart attacks) and hepatic disease (liver cancer, injury or hepatitis), acute tubular necrosis, acute pancretitis, hemolytic anemia, leukemia, myonecrosis, muscle injury, pulmonary (lung) necrosis or injury, dermatomyositis.  Decreased in conditions with elevated serum lactate or pyruvate such as thiamine deficiency, diabetic ketoacidosis and liver disease. 

Serum Glutamic Pyruvic Transaminase (SGPT or ALT)  Normal 5-35 mU/ml.  Found primarily in the liver, this test is elevated in liver disease. 

Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate (ESR)  The ESR is an indicator of a generalized inflammation in the body.  The downside of this test is that it may rise with a variety of conditions, including infection, certain types of arthritis, gout, .  

C-Reactive Protein (CRP)  The CRP is also an indicator of generalized inflammation in the body.  In the presence of infection, it typically rises more quickly than the ESR test.   

Anti-Nuclear Antibody (ANA)  This test is positive in certain types of arthritis and connective tissue disease. There are several patterns of a positive ANA.  A "homogenous" pattern may indicate collagen-vascular disease.  A "particulated" pattern may indicate mixed connective tissue disease, scleroderma, lupus and certain malignancies.  A "nucleolar" pattern may indicate scleroderma and raynaud's disease.  A "peripheral" pattern tends to indicate active lupus.  There are a host of other conditions, too, that may present with a positive ANA.  

Rheumatoid Factor (RF)  This test measures certain cells in the body's defense system (antibodies) that are reacting against the body itself.  Sjogren's disease, rheumatoid arthritis, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, slceroderma, polyarteritis nodosa and dermatomyositis all tend to demonstrate a positive rheumatoid factor.   

Lupus Erythematosus (LE) cell  Another test that indicates certain diseases, such as lupus, Sjogren's disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and polyarteritis nodosa and dermatomyositis.   

Serum Complement

Anti-Streptolysin O (ASO) 

HLA-B15  A genetic marker that is present more frequently in patients with lupus.  

HLA-B27  A genetic marker that is present more frequently in ankylosing spondylitis, Reiter's syndrome, psoriatic arthritis, and juvenile rheumatoid arthritis.  

Uric Acid (UA)

Calcium Pyrophosphate

Joint Fluid Analysis

Culture and Sensitivity

Gram's Stain



Acid Fast

Blood Agar

Chocolate Agar



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The Achilles Foot Health Centre
S. A. Schumacher, D.P.M., F.A.C.F.A.S., F.A.C.F.A.O.M.  
Dr. S. A. Schumacher, Podiatric Corporation  

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