AfterOurs Clinics - Colorado
AfterOurs Clinics - Colorado

Understanding Common Blood Tests and What They Tell You

After Ours Inc Blog

One of the most common lab tests that you’ll likely undergo from time to time is the blood test. This is a typical test for most healthcare providers to be able to monitor your overall well-being and diagnose any potential medical conditions that you may have. While the main name of a blood test is used, many different subcategories of blood tests can be ordered by your medical provider.

CBC – Complete Blood Count

Known formally as a complete blood count, this test is a combination of many different specialized tests. A CBC generally shows:

  • The total count of your platelets, white blood cells, and red blood cells.
  • Your hemoglobin levels.
  • The average size of your red blood cells.
  • Your red blood cell distribution width. This shows any differences in the size and volume of your red blood cells.

Lipid Panel

A lipid panel is a blood test that is utilized to measure your risk of cardiovascular disease. The panel specifically measures the amount of fat molecules, known as lipids, present within your blood. It includes a measurement of your triglycerides and four measurements of your cholesterol.

The triglyceride measurement determines if you have an elevated amount of triglycerides, a special type of fat found in the food you eat, in your blood. Elevated amounts of triglycerides are associated with both cardiovascular disease and pancreatic inflammation in the body.

The four cholesterol tests include high-density lipoprotein (HDL), very low-density lipoprotein (VLDL), low-density lipoprotein (LDL), and total cholesterol. HDL cholesterol is considered good cholesterol that helps to decrease the buildup of bad cholesterol in the body.

VLDL cholesterol is the reason you have to fast before getting a lipid panel. When VLDL amounts are high, it’s an indication of abnormal lipid metabolism. Lastly, LDL cholesterol is the bad cholesterol that can cause cardiovascular disease as it collects within your blood vessels.

Liver Function Tests

Liver function tests are performed to both monitor liver disease and identify the cause of any symptoms. This blood test specifically measures the levels of protein and specific enzymes in the blood. While there are many specific liver function tests, we’re going to share with you some of the most common.

Alanine Transaminase (ALT)

ALT is a specific enzyme in the liver that converts protein into usable energy for the liver cells. When there is damage to the liver, ALT gets released into the bloodstream. This test will show elevated ALT levels in your blood.

Alkaline Phosphatase (ALP)

This specialized enzyme, present in both the bone and liver, is necessary for breaking down proteins. Elevated levels of ALP in your blood can indicate liver damage, liver disease, or even bone disease.

Aspartate Transaminase (AST)

AST is responsible for helping your body break down amino acids. In a healthy individual, AST levels will be low. However, elevated AST levels can indicate liver disease, muscle damage, or even liver damage.

Albumin and Total Protein

Albumin is one of the many proteins made in the liver that fights infections in the body, among other things. When a blood test shows low levels of both total protein and albumin, it can mean liver damage, kidney infection, or a gastrointestinal condition.


Bilirubin is a result of red blood cells breaking down. Typically, bilirubin goes through the liver and is excreted through the stool. If high levels of this substance are detected on your liver function test, it signals an issue with the liver.

Get the Right Information and Right Care, Right Now

Whether it’s understanding the results of common blood tests or addressing immediate health concerns, trust After Ours Urgent Care to be your go-to medical provider. Look for an urgent care facility in Denver to experience comprehensive care tailored to your unique health needs.