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Visiting a diagnostic lab

You never know when you might need diagnostic laboratory services to deal with some medical problem or other. Among the conditions that can be tested for are diabetes, tuberculosis, anemia, hepatitis and Lyme disease. These labs can also do pregnancy tests and diagnose anemia, allergies, some skin conditions and many types of cancer.

If you need a test of some sort done, the first step you take will depend on what kind of test you need. For example, there are blood tests that require a period of fasting beforehand. So ask your doctor if there is anything you need to do in order to prepare, and follow his or her advice so as to get accurate test results.

When you go to the lab, the phlebotomist draws a small sample of blood (assuming it’s a blood test, which it most often is.) He or she explains the procedure and asks your name, just to make sure you are the right person to be getting a sample from today. Then, after cleaning and disinfecting the area and applying a topical anaesthetic, the blood is drawn. Then the puncture is cleaned and bandaged, and the rest is up to the lab. The staff will tell you how long to leave the bandage on. In most cases, it should take no more than a few days for the test to be completed, although some tests take longer.

Why you need a lab nearby

If no hospital nearby has a diagnostic laboratory services, you may find yourself having to take a day off from work, drive a long distance in order to spend a few minutes getting blood withdrawn for a test, then go back and wait for days or weeks to get the results. (Any medical problem that calls for the services of a diagnostic lab is probably serious enough that you want answers on it sooner rather than later.)

Look for a CLIA waived lab. This is a lab that meets the standards of the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments of 1988. These standards are meant to minimize the risk of incorrect test results, which can have serious medical consequences if acted upon.

Diagnostic laboratory services in Matthews, NC

The Conner Clinic in Matthews, NC, a subscription medical practice, has a CLIA waived in house lab and a phlebotomist on staff four half days a week. They can perform the rapid strep test, the flu test, the diabetes monitoring test, pregnancy test, and urinalysis, among others. The clinic accepts Aetna including the Medicare Advantage HMO, Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina, Beech Street, Cigna, Coventry, Healthgram, Human Choicecare, Medcost, Medicare and Railroad Medicare and United Healthcare. If you do not have any of these, contact them to find out if your insurance is accepted.

The Conner Clinic is a part of the Hallmark MD Private Care Group, a membership medical practice. The clinic also offers virtual concierge, an online interface which allows members to schedule appointments, monitor their health history, email their physician, request prescription refills, and view lab results. Subscribe today.

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