Skip to content

Understanding Lab Test Results

Font Size

Why It Is Done

Lab tests are generally done for one of the following reasons:

  • To find the cause of symptoms
  • To confirm a diagnosis
  • To screen for a disease. Screening tests are often done for people of a specific age or those who have a high risk for a specific disease.
  • To help rule out a disease or condition
  • To assess the severity of a disease
  • To monitor the progression of a disease, how well an organ is working, or if treatment is helping
  • To verify specific events (for example, DNA testing after a rape, or urine testing to look for drug use)

Many conditions can change your lab results. Your doctor will talk with you about any abnormal results as they relate to you.

1

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: January 23, 2014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
Next Article:

Hot Topics

WebMD Video: Now Playing

Click here to wach video: Dirty Truth About Hand Washing

Which sex is the worst about washing up? Why is it so important? We’ve got the dirty truth on how and when to wash your hands.

Click here to watch video: Dirty Truth About Hand Washing

Popular Slideshows & Tools on WebMD

bloodstream
Tips to help prevent clots.
checking blood sugar
Symptoms, diagnosis and treatment.
acupuncture needle on shoulder
Live and thrive.
gloved hand holding syringe
10 preventable diseases.
lone star tick
How to identify that bite.
man eating meal
Folates, green tea and more.
brain scan with soda
Tips to avoid complications.
disciplining a boy
Types, symptoms, causes.
Woman with stressed, fatigue
Get relief tips.
restroom sign
Food and drinks that make you go.
two male hands
Understanding RA.

Women's Health Newsletter

Find out what women really need.