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Glossary

AFB testing is ordered when someone has symptoms that suggest pulmonary TB or other mycobacterial lung infection.

This test may be used along with other tests such as pleural fluid analysis, acid-fast bacillus (AFB) smear and culture, and/or tuberculosis testing to help determine if a person has a Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection.

An allergen screen for immunoglobulin E, this is an individual test conducted to detect a specific allergy.

An abnormal reaction of your immune system to foreign substances like food, drugs, dust, animals, metals, etc.

Helps to screen liver damage and / or to help diagnose liver disease.

To screen for and help diagnose liver disorder or kidney disease; sometimes to evaluate nutritional status, especially in hospitalised patients

Used in the diagnosis and classification of acute leukaemia. Distinguishes Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL) from Acute Myelogenous Leukaemia (AML) and for further immunologic subtyping of ALL.
To determine the levels of ethanol in the serum, as ethanol can have serious CNS-related and hepatic adverse effects.
Aldolase is a protein (called an enzyme) that helps break down certain sugars to produce energy. It is found in high amount in muscle tissue. This test can be done to measure the amount of aldolase in your blood.
To determine the abnormal levels of aldosterone and renin to help diagnose a hormonal (endocrine) disorder such as primary aldosteronism (PA, Conn syndrome).
Alkaline Phosphatase (ALP) is a protein found in all body tissues. Tissues with higher amounts of ALP include the liver, bile ducts, and bone. A blood test can be done to measure the level of ALP.

Minimal Residual Disease (MRD) is the name given to small numbers of leukaemic cells (cancer cells from the bone marrow) that remain in the patient during treatment, or after treatment when the patient is in remission (no symptoms or signs of disease). It is the major cause of relapse in cancer and leukaemia.

This blood test checks the level of AFP in a pregnant woman's blood to assess the risk of a foetus having certain chromosomal abnormalities, such as Down syndrome (trisomy 21) or Edwards syndrome (trisomy 18), and open neural tube defects, such as spina bifida.

Aldolase is a protein (called an enzyme) that helps break down certain sugars to produce energy. It is found in high amount in muscle tissue. This test can be done to measure the amount of aldolase in your blood.

This test helps in the detection of elevated level of ammonia in the blood which may be the result of severe liver disease, kidney failure, or certain rare genetic urea cycle disorders. It also helps in investigating the cause of changes in behaviour and consciousness and to support the diagnosis of hepatic encephalopathy or Reye syndrome.

To diagnose and monitor acute pancreatitis, as also to diagnose and monitor chronic pancreatitis or other pancreatic diseases.

The clear liquid that surrounds and protects the foetus throughout pregnancy.

Helps to evaluate for certain autoimmune disorders, such as systemic lupus erythematous (SLE) and Sjogren’s syndrome, among other types.

May be advised when an individual has abnormal TSH and / or free T4 test results or signs and symptoms of a low / high level of thyroid hormones or the presence of a goiter, especially if the cause is suspected to be an autoimmune disease.

Recommended to evaluate ovarian function and fertility - sometimes in the evaluation of Polycystic OvarianSsyndrome (PCOS) or to evaluate the effectiveness of ovarian cancer treatment. In an infant - to evaluate the presence of external sex organs that are not clearly male or female (ambiguous genitalia) and / or function of the testicles in an infant boy.

Helps to diagnose Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) and differentiate it from other types of arthritis. Also helps evaluate the prognosis of a person with RA.

Test to detect liver damage and / or to help diagnose liver disease.

Helps to evaluate the risk of developing Cardiovascular Disease (CVD. Also used to help monitor treatment for high cholesterol or diagnose a rare inherited Apolipoprotein B (ApoB) deficiency.

The valve that regulates blood flow from the heart into the aorta.

Swelling of the main blood vessel leaving the heart (aorta), usually representing an underlying weakness in the wall of the aorta at that location.

To confirm a pregnancy,; to help identify an ectopic pregnancy; to monitor a pregnancy that may be at risk of failing; occasionally to screen a woman for pregnancy prior to some medical treatments; as part of a panel of tests used to screen for fetal abnormalities.

Bilirubin is a substance formed when hemoglobin breaks down. The test measures the amount of bilirubin in the blood, and helps to screen for / monitor liver disorders or hemolytic anemia, and to monitor neonatal jaundice.

Biochemistry is the branch of science that explores the chemical processes within and related to living organisms. It is a laboratory based science that brings together biology and chemistry. By using chemical knowledge and techniques, biochemists can understand and solve biological problems.

The process of removing tissue from a live human or animal to verify the presence of any disease, identify the cause of the disease, and evaluate the extent of disease progression. Biopsy is usually done for diagnosis of cancer.

To assess the platelets function.

A blood test that categorizes blood into one of four types: A, B, AB or O

BMI is defined as the body mass divided by the square of the body height. A patient is categorised as underweight, normal weight, overweight, or obese as per the BMI. BMI is used to predict the risk of chronic diseases like hypertension and diabetes.

A destructive change in brain tissue, such as a wound, injury or inflammation.

The test evaluates the health of the kidneys, helps diagnose kidney disease and aids in monitoring the effectiveness of dialysis and other treatments related to kidney disease or damage.

The major artery in the neck that supplies blood to the brain.

Passageway in the wrist through which nerves and the flexor muscles of the hands pass.

An intestinal bacteria that can be detected by a culture.

Test to help evaluate insulin production by the beta cells in the pancreas or to help determine the cause of low blood glucose (hypoglycemia).

Subcutaneous inflammation of connective tissue.

The area of the spinal cord located in the neck.

Relates to the lower, narrow part of the uterus (womb) located between the bladder and the rectum. It forms a canal that opens into the vagina, which leads to the outside of the body.

An infection caused by the Chikungunya virus (CHIKV). Symptoms include fever and joint pain. Diagnosis is by either testing the blood for the virus' RNA or antibodies of the virus.

Existing simultaneously with, and usually independently of, another medical condition.

To determine the general health status; to screen for, diagnose or monitor any one of a variety of diseases and conditions that affect the blood cells, e.g. anaemia, infection, inflammation, bleeding disorder or cancer.

Refers to the coronary arteries that emerge from the aorta to provide blood to the heart muscle.

A hormone that plays a vital role in the metabolism of proteins, lipids, and carbohydrates, among other functions. Normally, the level of cortisol in the blood rises and falls in a "diurnal variation" pattern, peaking early in the morning, then declining throughout the day and reaching its lowest level about midnight. A Cortisol test may be used to help diagnose Cushing syndrome, a condition associated with excess cortisol, or to help diagnose adrenal insufficiency or Addison disease - conditions associated with cortisol deficiency.

An enzyme present in various tissue types. CPK test may be used to detect inflammation of muscles (myositis) or muscle damage due to muscle disorders (myopathies) such as muscular dystrophy or to help diagnose rhabdomyolysis, if a person shows the relevant signs and symptoms.

A waste product formed by the breakdown of creatine, a substance important for converting food into energy (metabolism). The creatinine blood test is used to assess kidney function.

A branch of pathology that studies and diagnoses diseases on the cellular level.

Dengue fever is a mosquito-borne tropical disease caused by the dengue virus. Symptoms typically begin three to fourteen days after infection. This may include a high fever, headache, vomiting, muscle and joint pains, and a characteristic skin rash. A number of tests are available to confirm the diagnosis including detecting antibodies for the virus or its RNA.

DHEA-S is the sulphated form of DHEA and is the major androgen produced by the adrenal glands. This test is used in the differential diagnosis of hirsute or virilised female patients and for the diagnosis of premature adrenarche and adrenal tumours or cancer.

Dialysis is a life-support treatment that uses a special machine to remove waste products and excess fluid and salt from blood, in patients with kidney dysfunction.

This test helps to detect abnormalities in / pre-birth conditions of the foetus e.g. Down syndrome and is usually between the 8th and 14th week of pregnancy. This test mainly checks for two markers in blood viz. (i) Free Beta HCG - Presence in high levels indicate risk for Down syndrome and in low level for Trisomy 18 and 21; PAPP-A (Pregnancy Associated Plasma Protein) - Presence in low level indicates risk for Down syndrome and Trisomy 18 and 21.

An abnormally excessive accumulation of serous fluid in connective tissue or in a serous cavity.

This is a plate-based assay technique designed for detecting and quantifying substances such as antibodies, peptides, proteins, and hormones.

The sudden obstruction of a blood vessel by an embolus.

To detect the presence of inflammation caused by one or more conditions such as infections, tumours or autoimmune diseases; to help diagnose and monitor specific conditions such as temporal arteritis, systemic vasculitis, polymyalgia rheumatica, or rheumatoid arthritis.

Mucous membrane lining of the inner surface of the uterus that grows during each menstrual cycle and is shed in menstrual blood.

Relating to a procedure that uses an endoscope, a long, flexible, lighted tube, to diagnose or treat a condition.

Relating to a procedure that uses an endoscope, a long, flexible, lighted tube, to diagnose or treat a condition.

An estrogen that comes from both the foetus and the placenta. Low estriol levels may indicate the risk of having a baby with Down syndrome, especially when paired with low AFP levels and high HGC levels.

Thin tubes that extend from either side of the uterus toward the ovaries, as a passageway for eggs and sperm.

A protein in the body that binds to iron. Ferritin is the major iron storage protein in the body, so the ferritin test is ordered as an indirect way to measure the iron stores in the body.

Unborn baby from the eighth week after fertilization until delivery.
Free T3 test is used to assess thyroid function. Helps to diagnose hyperthyroidism and helps to monitor treatment of a person with a known thyroid disorder.
These tests are used to help evaluate thyroid function and diagnose hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism, usually after discovering that the Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) level is abnormal.

A test to measure the amount of glucose in the blood.

A test to measure the amount of glucose concentration over a period of time.

Haemoglobin is a substance within red blood cells that carries oxygen throughout the body.

This test measures the amount of space (volume) red blood cells occupy in the blood.

HBeAg is ordered to stage chronic hepatitis B infection and / or monitoring treatment response.

Protrusion of part of an organ through the muscle that surrounds it.

Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) attacks the immune system, making it difficult for the body to fight infection and disease.

Refers to the microscopic examination of tissue in order to study the manifestations of disease.

Measures the amount of blood calcium that is not bound to protein.

A branch of biomedical science that covers the study of immune systems in all organisms, including its structure and function, disorders of the immune system, blood banking, immunisation, and organ transplantation.

Introducing a solution into a vein.

Measures the amount of blood calcium that is not bound to protein.

It is a pain in the knee and around knee joint due to causes like injury and medical conditions.

A test to measure the amount of lead present in the blood.

Lipase is an enzyme that helps digest fats. Lipase is produced by the pancreas, liver, intestine, tongue, stomach, and many other cells. Lipase testing is indicated in acute pancreatitis, as well as in the diagnosis of peritonitis, strangulated or infarcted bowel, and pancreatic cyst.

A group of tests used to measure lipids, or fatty substances, in the body. The panel includes total cholesterol, HDL,LDL, VLDL and triglycerides.

A group of tests used to detect and monitor liver disease or damage.

Small organs located in the channels of the lymphatic system which store special cells to trap bacteria or cancer cells that travel through the lymph vessels.

A test to measure the amount of magnesium in the blood. Magnesium testing may be ordered in patients with chronically low blood levels of calcium and potassium. It also done when a person has symptoms that may be due to a magnesium deficiency, such as muscle weakness, twitching, cramping, confusion, cardiac arrhythmias, and seizures.

A urine microalbumin test is a test to detect very small levels of a blood protein (albumin) in your urine. A microalbumin test is used to detect early signs of kidney damage in people who are at risk of developing kidney disease.Magnesium testing may be ordered in patients with chronically low blood levels of calcium and potassium. It also done when a person has symptoms that may be due to a magnesium deficiency, such as muscle weakness, twitching, cramping, confusion, cardiac arrhythmias, and seizures.

A newborn, specifically a baby in the first 4 weeks or 1 month after birth. It is a time when changes are very rapid.

A group of blood tests performed before and during a pregnancy.

A test to detect blood in the stool by placing a small sample of stool on a chemically treated card, pad or wipe.

Pathology is a significant component of the study of disease and a major field in modern medicine and diagnosis.

Physician who identifies diseases by studying cells and tissues under a microscope.

A technique used in a number of laboratory tests. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is a technique that is used to amplify trace amounts of DNA (and in some instances, RNA) located in or on almost any liquid or surface where DNA strands may be deposited.

A component of DNA and RNA and is necessary for all living cells.

A prostate-specific antigen screen to evaluate the possibility of prostate cancer.

Relating to the peritoneum, or the lining of the abdominal cavity.

Prothrombin time (PT) is a blood test that measures how long it takes blood to clot. A prothrombin time test can be used to check for bleeding problems. PT is also used to check whether medicine to prevent blood clots is working. A PT test may also be called an INR test.

It is a coagulation test used to Screen for certain coagulation factor deficiencies.

Also known as red corpuscles or erythrocytes, these cells carry oxygen through the blood to various body tissues.

The scientific study or diagnostic examination of blood serum, especially with regard to the response of the immune system to pathogens or introduced substances.

A type of test used to screen for cervical cancer.

This test can indicate potential complications of a pregnancy, as well as the presence of multiple foetuses. A blood sample is taken to detect the levels of AFP, HCG, and estriol.

AFP: A protein produced by the foetus. High levels of this protein can indicate certain potential defects, such as neural tube defects or failure of the foetus’ abdomen to close.

HCG: A hormone produced by the placenta. Low levels may indicate potential problems with the pregnancy, including possible miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy. High levels of HCG can indicate a molar pregnancy, or a multiple pregnancy with two or more children.

Estriol: An estrogen that comes from both the foetus and the placenta. Low estriol levels may indicate the risk of Down syndrome, especially when paired with low AFP levels and high HGC levels.

A hormone secreted by the pituitary gland, to regulate the thyroid function.

An infection caused by the bacterium called Mycobacterium tuberculosis, it usually affects the lung. The common symptoms of TB are coughing, sometimes with mucous or blood, chills, fatigue, fever, loss of weight, loss of appetite and night sweats.

An acute illness with fever caused by infection with the bacterium Salmonella typhi/paratyphi. Typhoid fever has an insidious onset, with fever, headache, constipation, malaise, chills, and muscle pain.

A test to look for human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), also called the pregnancy hormone. This hormone is only present during pregnancy.

A physical ,chemical and microscopic examination of the urine.

Vitamin B12 is necessary for creating new red blood cells, maintaining nervous system health, and growth and development in children.

Also called leukocytes, these blood cells are involved in protecting the body against both infectious diseases and foreign invaders.



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