Clinical labs play an important role in the diagnosis of medical conditions. It is clinical labs that are responsible for testing samples collected from patients to determine if any disease is present within the sample. Physicians place a great deal of trust in the professionals employed by clinical labs. According to the CDC, 70% of today's medical decisions are based on the findings of a clinical lab. Most clinical labs are capable of conducting multiple tests. These tests fall into one of three categories: routine, esoteric, or genetic. Learn more about the characteristics that set each of these categories apart.
1. Routine Medical Testing
Clinical labs perform many routine medical tests. These routine tests are considered exploratory in nature, but they aren't necessarily required because a physician suspects there is something wrong with the patient.
Physicians will order routine medical tests to check on the health status of a patient. Routine medical tests include urinalysis, verifying the levels of certain substances in the blood, and checking for diabetes. Because these types of tests are so common in a clinical lab setting, all employees within the lab must be capable of performing routine medical testing.
2. Esoteric Medical Testing
Esoteric medical testing is much more advanced than any routine testing that occurs in a clinical lab setting. Physicians will typically order an esoteric test when they are trying to pinpoint a diagnosis for a patient.
Most esoteric tests are designed to identify rare and uncommon diseases that may not be noticed through routine testing. Specialized lab technicians are required to complete esoteric tests. These tests require a significant amount of knowledge and skill, and only the most advanced lab technicians are capable of interpreting the results of an esoteric medical test properly.
3. Genetic Medical Tests
A person's genetic makeup can reveal a lot about any potential medical complications that may arise in the future. Genetic testing is performed in a clinical lab setting for several reasons.
Some patients want to know if they are a carrier for certain genes related to an inheritable disease. Other patients use genetic testing as a way to determine if they are predisposed to certain types of cancers. Expectant mothers will often undergo genetic testing to identify any abnormalities in the genes of their baby before it's born. Newborns can also be screened for genetic disorders.
Genetic testing can help patients plan for, prepare for, and possibly prevent certain medical issues in the future. Learn more by contacting clinical laboratory services.