What Do Those Lab Tests Mean
- Chemistry and hematology blood tests provide a detailed look at your pet’s health from the inside.
- Chemistry and electrolyte blood tests provide useful indicators of the health and function of your pet’s organs and fluid balance.
- Hematology blood tests provide a detailed look at blood cells.
We want to help our clients to have a better understanding of what each component means in each blood test.
Chemistry Blood Tests
- ALT: Increased levels of this enzyme may be a sign of liver damage or disease.
- ALB: Albumin is the most important protein in the body. Low levels can indicate such things as liver, kidney, or intestinal disease.
- ALP: Elevations can indicate liver swelling or decreased bile flow caused by liver disease or other endocrine disorders such as thyroid disease, and diabetes among others.
- AMY: Amylase is an enzyme produced to help digest food. Elevated levels can indicate disease of the pancreas, intestines, or kidney.
- Bile Acids: One of the best measures of liver function.
- BUN: Elevated levels of this can indicate disease of the kidney or liver.
- Ca: Calcium is important to monitor for early signs of certain cancers. Imbalanced calcium can also be indicative of certain metabolic diseases.
- Electrolytes (NA+,K+): Potassium (K+) levels are important for normal muscle function and heart rate. Sodium (NA+) levels are important for body fluid balance. Both are critical to your pet’s health and aid in the diagnosis and treatment of several diseases.
- CHOL: Elevated levels of cholesterol may be an indication of a variety of disorders such as hypothyroidism in dogs, liver and kidney disease.
- CRE: Creatinine is an important value to monitor kidney function.
- GLOB: Globulin is a body protein that indicates problems such as inflammation or infection.
- GLU: Elevated levels of glucose can indicate such problems as diabetes.
- GGT: Measurement and monitoring are important for differentiating different types of liver diseases.
- PHOS: Phosphorus is an important enzyme to monitor for kidney disease as well as its balance with calcium to monitor many conditions.
- T4: An excellent screening test for the function of the thyroid gland in dogs and cats.
- TBIL: An important value to evaluate the liver.
- TP: We use this value to determine many conditions such as anemia, as well as liver and kidney diseases.
Hematology Blood Tests
The Complete Blood Count (CBC): This is a test that provides measurements of red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. The CBC is an important tool that can detect many conditions as well as assess inflammation, infection and blood clotting capabilities.
- RBC: Red blood cells carry oxygen to the tissues of the body and transport carbon dioxide to be exhaled by the lungs.
- WBC: White blood cells play a major role in your pet’s immune system function. Normal baseline levels are very important to determine the importance of changes seen with infection or inflammation.
- Platelets: A crucial component of the blood clotting system. Adequate numbers must be present to prevent or stop bleeding. Therefore, it is very important to measure platelet numbers prior to surgical procedures, as well as to identify clotting issues before they become critical in the non- surgical patient.