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Blood test results - how big a deal?
Old 05-16-2012, 01:32 PM   #1
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Blood test results - how big a deal?

I got blood test results that had a few values outside the ideal ranges. Vit D was 21 vs. a usual range of 35 to 150. Fasting blood glucose was 101 vs. 79-99 range. LDLs were 113 vs. max of 100 for the ideal range.

The vitamin D low level is easily fixed via supplements. The other items are a touch high, but look to me like they are barely outside of the ideal ranges and likely remediated via diet changes. When they drew blood I was exhausted after twoo weeks on the road and a very busy weekend catching up on chores in between.

Is this the correct interpretation?
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Old 05-16-2012, 01:43 PM   #2
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I wouldn't let this make you rush out to prepay your funeral expenses. Your glucose is within the error of the test and not off enough to have you do a glucose tolerance test. I think they came up with the LDL max of 100 by testing malnourished ten year olds. I'm not a doctor. Maybe one of the ones on the forum will pop in and give you a comment. You could always (gasp) talk to your own doctor.
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Old 05-16-2012, 01:46 PM   #3
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You could always (gasp) talk to your own doctor.
I will be, but they would not do it over the phone (would not get paid that way, dontchaknow) and I simply cannot get in there for a couple more weeks.
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Old 05-16-2012, 02:14 PM   #4
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What was your HDL? Some research today suggests that LDL or total cholesterol isn't a great indicator in a vacuum, but the ratio of HDL to LDL or the ratio of total cholesterol to HDL might be more relevant. "Borderline high" cholesterol (total or LDL) might be less of a health risk if it also came with high HDL levels.

As for the glucose, some say anything over 100 is leaning toward "prediabetes" and they may want to do an A1C test to confirm it. But it can vary. A few years ago I had a blood panel where my fasting glucose was 104. My doctor mentioned an A1C as optional but I never took it (partially since I wanted to avoid being diagnosed as prediabetic).

Last month I had to undergo biometric testing as a condition for a significant premium break on my health insurance. This time? My weight was close to the same as before -- maybe 5 pounds less -- but this time my fasting glucose was down to 90.
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Old 05-16-2012, 02:32 PM   #5
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What was your HDL?
Dunno. I plan to get a copy of the full test results when I go in there.
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Old 05-16-2012, 02:37 PM   #6
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I got blood test results that had a few values outside the ideal ranges. Vit D was 21 vs. a usual range of 35 to 150. Fasting blood glucose was 101 vs. 79-99 range. LDLs were 113 vs. max of 100 for the ideal range.

The vitamin D low level is easily fixed via supplements. The other items are a touch high, but look to me like they are barely outside of the ideal ranges and likely remediated via diet changes. When they drew blood I was exhausted after twoo weeks on the road and a very busy weekend catching up on chores in between.

Is this the correct interpretation?
I think a great number of people have low D levels. Seems to me most Drs don't make a big deal of it, although I suspect it something you would want to be in range, and actually not on the very low side of the range. To me, your other numbers wouldn't be a concern if they showed up on my results, but I'd let your Dr indicate if otherwise.

Edit:added link on vit d http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/news/...reat_to_Health
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Old 05-16-2012, 02:48 PM   #7
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What was your HDL? Some research today suggests that LDL or total cholesterol isn't a great indicator in a vacuum, but the ratio of HDL to LDL or the ratio of total cholesterol to HDL might be more relevant. "Borderline high" cholesterol (total or LDL) might be less of a health risk if it also came with high HDL levels.
I was told the most important ratio was the Triglyceride/HDL ratio, which should be under 2.

I have no expertise in this area and am simply repeating what I have been told.
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Old 05-16-2012, 02:58 PM   #8
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As for the glucose, some say anything over 100 is leaning toward "prediabetes" and they may want to do an A1C test to confirm it. But it can vary. A few years ago I had a blood panel where my fasting glucose was 104. My doctor mentioned an A1C as optional but I never took it (partially since I wanted to avoid being diagnosed as prediabetic).
+1 on the A1C. Pick up an A1C test kit at the drugstore and check it yourself at home. That will, for all practical purposes, tell you what your average blood glucose condition has been for the past couple of months. It should set your mind at ease.

I would also not pay too much attention to your other numbers as long as the HDL and triglycerides are both in good shape.
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Old 05-16-2012, 02:59 PM   #9
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As someone who has been diagnosed at 'prediabetic', I will tell you that it might be a good thing for you to get one of those cheap glucose test kits where the total cost is almost nothing....

I had always had my glucose tested while fasting... and I was always under 100... took a test at the doc when I had not been fasting and it was 145... he gave me a testing kit... I put it off for a few months and then decided to try it out... my first few readings after my meals were in the 190s to low 200s...

It always came down after awhile, but I do not know how long I have been having high levels. I could have had this for 20 or more years now that I have read more on it... I have adjusted my diet and now usually have a 120 to 140 after eating... but sometimes go down to 85 when I have not eaten for 5 or 6 hours....

SOOOO, to me, fasting glucose is kind of meaningless....
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Old 05-16-2012, 03:44 PM   #10
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We recently visited the doctor and had blood work done. Both DH and I have low Vit D levels, but DH is unusually low...mmm 18, I think. The RX for each of us was 1,000 units of Vit D daily, and an RX for 8 pills 50,000 units Vit D to be taken 1/wk for 8 wks for DH. DH spends a lot of time outside so he gets plenty of sunshine. Odd.
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Old 05-16-2012, 03:46 PM   #11
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The lab test for my fasting blood glucose without meds is 105, so my doctor diagnosed me as prediabetic and put me on meds to get it back down. My A1C is also borderline. I suppose I could have fought the diagnosis, because I think it is silly when just a few years ago that would have been considered normal; but the meds are generic and only cost me $7/month.
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Old 05-16-2012, 03:52 PM   #12
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My A1C is also borderline. I suppose I could have fought the diagnosis, because I think it is silly when just a few years ago that would have been considered normal; but the meds are generic and only cost me $7/month.
Yeah. In reality the only reason I fought off a clinical diagnosis is because there's still a chance I may wind up in the individual health insurance market and dinged with a pre-existing condition and something that likely puts me in a higher risk pool. Other than that, I probably would have went ahead with the A1C and not worried about a diagnosis. Depending on how things play out, come 2014 that may not be a concern any more.
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Old 05-16-2012, 03:55 PM   #13
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Yeah. In reality the only reason I fought off a clinical diagnosis is because there's still a chance I may wind up in the individual health insurance market and dinged with a pre-existing condition and something that likely puts me in a higher risk pool. Other than that, I probably would have went ahead with the A1C and not worried about a diagnosis. Depending on how things play out, come 2014 that may not be a concern any more.
That is precisely teh reason I will fight like a lion to avoid such a diagnosis.
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Old 05-16-2012, 04:43 PM   #14
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I got blood test results that had a few values outside the ideal ranges. Vit D was 21 vs. a usual range of 35 to 150. Fasting blood glucose was 101 vs. 79-99 range. LDLs were 113 vs. max of 100 for the ideal range.

The vitamin D low level is easily fixed via supplements. The other items are a touch high, but look to me like they are barely outside of the ideal ranges and likely remediated via diet changes. When they drew blood I was exhausted after twoo weeks on the road and a very busy weekend catching up on chores in between.

Is this the correct interpretation?
I wonder if the blood draws and tests could be re-done when you return to the doctor--could eating out, poor sleeping in hotels, and air travel for two weeks on the road have skewed the results?
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Old 05-16-2012, 05:01 PM   #15
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....the meds are generic and only cost me $7/month.
My/our main concern, (neither of us are on any kind of meds), wouldn't be so much dollar related, (although cost would serve to reinforce our desire not to be medicated), but rather an aversion to putting 'stuff', (the long term effects of which appear to be seldom known), into our systems.
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Old 05-16-2012, 05:17 PM   #16
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I wonder if the blood draws and tests could be re-done when you return to the doctor--could eating out, poor sleeping in hotels, and air travel for two weeks on the road have skewed the results?
When the Dr. saw me that day he even said, "you look tired."

Given how exhaustion and stress affect almost everything about health, I would not be surprised in the slightest if the tests were affected.
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Old 05-16-2012, 05:37 PM   #17
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DH spends a lot of time outside so he gets plenty of sunshine. Odd.
What two doctors have told me:

After the age of 45, adults convert sunlight to Vit. D at about 50% of the efficiency as when age 20. And this rapidly declines further as we age.

Also, if sunscreen is worn, this prevents the sunlight to Vit. D conversion.

Also, much depends on latitude. Between September and May, states in the 'upper half' of the U.S. don't get enough direct sunlight to allow residents to receive enough sun to convert to meet the required Vit. D amounts.

omni
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Old 05-16-2012, 05:56 PM   #18
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When the Dr. saw me that day he even said, "you look tired."

Given how exhaustion and stress affect almost everything about health, I would not be surprised in the slightest if the tests were affected.
If your tests show any reason for concern the first thing you should do is take them again, just to rule out that possibility or how they were processed in the lab.
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Old 05-16-2012, 05:59 PM   #19
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My research confirms what Omni said... As we get older, we're more likely to get Vit. D deficiency.

I'm on round two of prescription vit D supplements. I live in San Diego, go walking at lunch... but I'm fair complected so I wear sunscreen and a hat. I'd rather take Vit D supplements than get melanoma. (My brother had it, it's a real concern.)

Anecdotally, friends have said they were dx'd as Vit D deficient during peri-menopause and menopause... (I'm in the middle of a hot flash as I type this.) So that fits what Omni said, also, as far as age we start having issues. They happened to be women... so the timing works.
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Old 05-16-2012, 06:02 PM   #20
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My/our main concern, (neither of us are on any kind of meds), wouldn't be so much dollar related, (although cost would serve to reinforce our desire not to be medicated), but rather an aversion to putting 'stuff', (the long term effects of which appear to be seldom known), into our systems.
There are three separate considerations to me:

1 -- concern about the cost of the meds;

2 -- concern about the side effects of the meds;

3 -- concern about being diagnosed with something that makes me a higher risk if we have to apply for individual health insurance in the future.

In reality, the magnitude of my concerns here go (from greatest fear to lowest fear) #3, #2 and #1.
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