Patients are often confused about why different lab tests may be ordered and what their test results might mean. To try and make this process a bit simpler for AIRM patients, our lab team has answered some of the most common questions they receive from patients below.
Q: What do you look for when evaluating a semen analysis?
A: We look at the individual sperm and evaluate the motility and the total number of motile sperm within a sample. By evaluating these different concentrations, we can determine the fertility levels of an individual patient. These results help our practitioners determine the best treatment plan for each participant to pursue.
Q: How do you test blood hormone levels?
A: After we draw a patient’s blood, we allow the sample to clot before spinning it down to sort the different components of whole blood. Then, we remove a section of the blood called the serum which holds no red or white blood cells. The serum is placed in the Roche diagnostic machine to determine specific hormone concentrations within each patient’s sample.
Q: Why is it beneficial to provide patients with same day results?
A: By completing most of our lab tests in-house, we can provide our practitioners with more accurate patient information. This increases accuracy when determining the best time to perform specific procedures or administer medication. For example, if a patient’s hormone levels suggest that they will be ovulating soon, we can alter a treatment plan to maximize the chances of optimal results.
Q: Why do you need to draw so much blood?
A: Different tests require different levels of blood, so we need to ensure that our labs techs have as much as they may need to perform all of the tests ordered by practitioners.
Q: What do you wish patients knew before they had their blood drawn at a lab?
A: We hope patients know that this should be a painless process. We understand that giving blood can be slightly uncomfortable. However, a few small tests will improve your treatment outcomes overall and provide a great deal of beneficial knowledge.