Blood tests, if properly interpreted, provide an effective diagnostic tool for health care providers. Blood is taken from the patient, normally from a vein, and subjected to tests designed to indicate either health problems or areas where more tests are needed. They also show if treatments are getting the anticipated results.

Blood tests can:

Check the kidneys, liver, endocrine system and heart
Diagnose diseases and conditions like cancer, diabetes and anemia
Prevent unnecessary drugs and treatment

Blood tests should be done when there are symptoms that could be indicators of a number of actual organic problems because it is not good medicine to guess when you can know.

Blood tests are also used to determine if people are legally intoxicated or to determine if a person has used legal or illegal drugs and for some other non-diagnostic uses.

Blood tests are very common. When you have routine checkups, your doctor may recommend blood tests to see how your body is working.

While blood tests do not always produce a definitive diagnosis of a health condition, they are very helpful when combined with a person’s medical history, current environment and diet and vital signs–blood pressure, pulse rate, temperature and with other tests like CAT scans, MRIs and X-rays.