Integrative medicine is a holistic system looking at the whole of a person, but it does not move forward with any treatment without scientific proof. It takes into account the wisdom of the past and the technological advancement of the present; therefore, integrative medicine uses advanced Specialty Lab Testing to plan the most effective treatment for every individual.
In this article, we will be discussing Specialty lab testing in details to help you understand the benefits and effectiveness of such tests.
What is specialty lab testing?
Specialty Lab Testing is a collection of technologically advanced tests to help diagnose diseases and conditions not identified by traditional lab testing.
On your first consultation, you will be asked about your intention for the visit, medical history, genetics, presence of any symptoms, diet and exercise, smoking and drinking habits, sleeping pattern and characteristics of your relationship to family and friends in order for you practitioner to identify any suspicious pattern and order the most appropriate specialty lab tests. You will be given clear instruction about each test along with necessary preparations and follow-ups. Upon receiving tests results, your naturopathic doctor will interpret the test results and provide you with appropriate integrative treatments along with a comprehensive lifestyle plan to heal the pains and live a long happy life.
To make sure specialty lab test results are reliable and accurate, your integrative practitioner will collaborate with the following laboratories for specific conditions:
True Health Diagnostics has a cutting edge process consisting of advanced equipment and a committed team of scientists always focused on accuracy and quality. Their sophisticated technology and bio storage ensure the integrity of all samples by 24/7 digital monitoring. THD specialty tests can detect conditions such as genetic deficiencies, hormonal imbalance, diabetes, and liver issues before any traditional test.
Vibrant is a leading science and technology laboratory that has science-driven approach toward offering life-transforming services. Vibrant delivers symptom-based diagnostics and prognostics for food allergies and micronutrients testing using an integrated microarray platform that would make possible multiplex testing at an affordable price for all.
Vibrant’s food allergy testing panel includes 96 of the most common foods which are often allergens including nightshades, fish, shellfish, peanut, wheat, milk, nuts, egg, corn, soy, fruits, vegetables, grains and legumes and uses only purified natural or recombinant allergen extracts for diagnosis to provide an improved understanding of IgE profile with quantitative results based on chemiluminescent measurements.
Vibrant micronutrient testing includes extracellular and intracellular nutrients to identify baseline as well as functional nutritional deficiencies to diagnose cellular nutrient absorption deficiency. Detecting higher than normal levels of vitamins and minerals in your blood is another benefit of this test to prevent toxicity. Providing a short-term nutritional status of the last few days along with a long-term status of the previous 4-6 months is included as well.
Doctor’s Data is a bridge between traditional microbiology and complementary medicine to accurately identify serious health issues such as heavy metal toxicity.
Great Plains Laboratory uses state of the art technology and techniques to provide understandable scientific results. It has designed a comprehensive system for testing health conditions like mitochondrial dysfunction and environmental toxins. There are 74 markers to evaluate your natural detoxifying system, 172 chemicals including Tiglylglycine (TG) marker to detect mitochondrial disorders resulted from mutations, which are caused by toxic chemicals and also 11 Mycotoxines to screen in even lower levels. Organic Acids Test (OAT) is your metabolic snapshot based on the products that discard through your urine.
SpectraCell Laboratories is committed to disease prevention and offers the highest of quality in lab testing for nutritional deficiency and anti-aging solutions. Pioneering intracellular micronutrient and cardiometabolic testing evaluate a spectrum of risk factors and biomarkers for optimum health and detection of any disorder. The state of the art technology for telomere length testing is also used to reveal your cellular age.
Cyrex Labs is focused on immunology and specializes in antibody arrays for food associated autoimmunity and related neuro dysregulation. By collaborating with medical researchers and healthcare professionals, Cyrex Labs designs next-generation lab tests for current complex maladies of autoimmune and infectious diseases.
Global Lyme Diagnostics is a team of professionals that has designed GLD breakthrough specialty test to overcome insufficiencies of the current two-tier diagnostic approach for Lyme disease. GLD test is rooted in science and aims to decrease current misdiagnosis of patients along with an accurate test for common Lyme co-infections.
Diagnostic Solutions Lab aims to deliver unparalleled quality and clinically relevant diagnostic for serious health conditions namely gastrointestinal diseases. Their GI-MAP stool test uses quantitative PCR technology to provide a true DNA/PCR based test to detect pathogens including H. pylori along with antibiotic resistance genes.
IvyGene specializes in revolutionary technologies for early detection of cancer aiming to turn cancer to a curable disease. The test is affordable for everybody; therefore, the status quo on cancer prevention can be changed to a proactive approach. The test uses first-class sequencing techniques for DNA methylation analysis of the whole blood and detects cancer even in stage one. IvyGene looks for sequence and pattern of methylated DNA consistently present with actual cancer and does not use genetics to determine the possibility of developing the disease.
PULS Cardiac Test, which won 2016 Abby awards for innovation in healthcare, is the first-class but simple blood test to analyze biological processes of coronary heart diseases and identify patients at risk of a heart attack. It analyzes 9 serum protein assays to measure proteins related to different cardiovascular issues. It is effective for all ethnic groups and goes beyond cholesterol and plaque testing since 50% of patients have normal cholesterol levels.
ZRT Lab has a people-first mindset and offers innovative testing to promote wellness. It provides comprehensive test reports for neurotransmitters disorder while maintaining accuracy. The testing involves 14 parent neurotransmitters and downstream metabolites to identify a systematic pattern. It is worth mentioning no other lab offers such a test.
Meridian Valley Labs has taken laboratory testing to the next level by being the first lab in the USA to offer urine hormone testing. It incorporates world-class quality assurance for Candida overgrowth issue which measures moderate or high levels of Candida antibodies indicating the patient currently has (or had in the past) Candida overgrowth in the intestines.
GX Sciences is a premier biotechnology company who has designed a key solution for affordable Nutrigenomic Testing through a simple cheek swab or blood/urine microsampling. Once tested, Nutrigenomic panel reports provide SNP (polymorphism) analysis of 120+ genes and the proprietary software further interprets each abnormal genetic result in order to quickly help the naturopathic doctor in prescribing only the needed supplements along with a comprehensive health plan for every individual.
GX Sciences’ panels aim to scientifically evaluate and nutritionally support the functional uniqueness of each individual in a precision and integrative approach. GX goal is to make biochemistry fun again and to simplify and consolidate the ongoing medical knowledge of functional nutrition into an easy to use clinical tool that helps each patient and practitioner alike.
Genetic SNP deficiencies uncover the truth about conditions hidden in your DNA and reveal your risk for diseases. Lipoprotein markers can reveal your inherited cardiometabolic risk, coagulation markers evaluate your blood clotting risk, and pharmacogenetics detects your response to a given medication. These markers are designed to provide a comprehensive picture of your health risks.
Hormonal imbalance can cause diseases and symptoms such as depression, cardiovascular disorders, and infertility. Hormones play vital roles in your life because they regulate most complex mechanisms throughout your body; therefore, allowing your brain to think clearly, your heart to beat appropriately and your body to reproduce effectively. Since hormone production system is complex, the correct diagnosis is extremely difficult; therefore, specialty lab tests are required to identify the actual abnormality. Hormone testing includes thyroid, adrenals, sex, and human growth hormones along with PSA test to diagnose prostate cancer.
Diabetes is a complicated disease with a long term process, and if detected early, can improve the quality of people’s life. Traditional markers are designed for the diagnosis of fully developed diabetes, but it is possible to detect it in early stages of insulin resistance and pancreatic beta-cell strain before even reaching prediabetes stage to provide enough time to control its progression.
Liver issues are life-threatening; therefore, early and accurate diagnosis is of the utmost importance. They might be inherited or caused by external factors such as Hepatitis viruses or lifestyle choices like excessive consumption of alcohol.
Anemia is a blood disorder caused by low number of red blood cells; therefore, enough oxygen is not carried to lungs, cells, and tissues. Red blood cells are produced regularly in the bone marrow. To have enough red blood cells, your body needs to get nutrients like iron, folate and vitamin B12 from your diet. Deficiency in these nutrients causes anemia but inflammation, autoimmune diseases, infection, environmental toxicity, and gut health also can affect red blood cell production leading to anemia. Symptoms of anemia include regular fatigue, headache, and chest pain leading to heart problems.
Food allergies and sensitivities can cause unpleasant physical and emotional symptoms which do not have any identifiable cause; therefore, food allergy testing is a good first step in integrative medicine’s holistic approach. Testing is done by measuring food-specific igG4 antibodies using ELISA method to detect delayed food allergies. IgG4 has a very high attraction to allergens which makes it ideal for detecting chronic food sensitivities.
SIBO which stands for small intestinal bacterial overgrowth is a disorder when too many bacteria are present in the small intestine. This bacterial imbalance in the gut can lead to diarrhea, pain, bloating, nausea, and fatigue and over time it may cause anemia and weight loss. SIBO is more common in elderlies and people with digestive problems such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
Cardiovascular evaluation (Heart and Arteries) are one of the most common diseases in the USA and cause 1 out of every 4 deaths every year. Proprietary SMC cardiac function and inflammatory biomarkers testing deliver insights before any damage has happened to the heart and arteries due to vascular inflammation and endothelial dysfunction.
Infectious diseases are caused by harmful germs that found everywhere and can be transferred to you by direct or indirect contact as well as insects and contaminated food and soil. The germs include bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites. Some infections have visible symptoms such as fever and fatigue while others are hidden yet life-threatening. Heliobacter Pylori, Hepatitis, Herpes, and Epstein-Barr virus are among the most serious infections.
Inflammatory Markers are the body’s natural response to injuries, but when gone too far, it becomes chronic and spreads throughout the body causing many diseases such as diabetes, arthritis, and cancer. Early detection of even small rise in immune system markers such as C-reactive protein (CRP) can help with the prevention of such illnesses.
Heavy metal toxicity by aluminum, mercury, and the lead is common and can accumulate in your body due to environmental pollution and affect your health negatively; therefore, accurate analysis of heavy metal levels in your body by high-resolution ICP-MS elemental analysis can bring back balance to your health.
Gastrointestinal diseases have the main focus among medical community and gut microbiome is being recognized as one of the most important parts of human health and longevity; therefore, accurate detection of what microorganisms are living in your body and finding the infectious agents is critical for your life. Gastrointestinal issues often remain hidden due to the complexity of the system while they cause many unpleasant symptoms such as pain, bloating, diarrhea, and constipation.
Mitochondrial dysfunction underlies many chronic conditions such as neurological disorders and autoimmune problems. Mitochondria are organelles found within cells that are responsible for energy production through respiration and regulation of cellular metabolism.
Environmental toxins greatly impact your health and longevity leading to chronic diseases; therefore, it is critical to detect early stages of oxidation and inflammation.
Nutritional deficiencies are the cause of many symptoms and diseases which is resulted from wrong food choices, digestive disorder, inflammation or infection.
Candida can lead to food sensitivity-like symptoms and nutritional deficiency. Candida is a yeast normally present in the intestinal tract in small amounts, but when overgrown it can become a serious health issue.
Anti-aging testing is critical in preserving the youthfulness of the body and mind. Telomere is the end section of each chromosome in DNA which acts as a cap to your genetic material and becomes shorter with every cell replication resulting in a shorter life span for the cell and a faster aging process for you as a whole.
Autoimmune diseases are conditions that your immune system becomes over-reactive and attacks your body by making antibodies. Regulatory T cells, which are special cells to regulate the immune system, often fail in their job. The tissues attacked are mostly bones, cartridges, and intestinal tracts. Functional immunology and autoimmunity tests offer with the highest quality for Alzheimer’s diseases, intestinal issues, wheat/gluten sensitivity, diabetes, neurological conditions, joint pains, and irritable bowel syndrome.
Lyme disease is spread by ticks carrying Borrelia bacteria, which cause redness at the site of the bite on the skin and can have repeated episodes years later with symptoms such as shooting joint pain, tingling in the arms and legs and swelling.
Cancer screening/marker aims to detect over or undergrowth of cells in any part of the body. Normally, damaged cells dying and new cells are forming, but when this process is broken, damaged cells remain and new cells will form when they do not need, and causing the formation of tumors, which can spread throughout the body.
Neurotransmitter levels which are abnormal will lead to over/under stimulation of the body and mind causing unpleasant symptoms such as depression, chronic fatigue, and insomnia. Neurotransmitters are chemical messenger relaying information from one nerve to another.
Are there any risks involved with specialty lab testing?
There are absolutely no risks associated with Specialty Lab Testing because your blood, urine, and stool samples are collected for analysis.
Since the tests are done in world-class laboratories with the highest of hygiene standards, the possibility of any contamination is zero. The site of needle entry will be sterilized by alcohol to remove bacteria present on your skin.The only minor discomfort comes from needle going into your skin.
Do you need specialty lab testing?
Integrative medicine proposes a holistic approach towards health starting with your individualized lifestyle plan, but due to years of mismanagement, your current health state is not optimum and your new healthy lifestyle will not be sufficient to correct the mistakes of the past.
You do not have to wait for symptoms to reveal themselves. Specialty Lab Testing can help you identify issues that are undiagnosed yet affecting your mental and physical health; therefore, preventing you to have optimum performance and to achieve your goals.
Only after having Specialty Lab Test results, you can move forward with your unique treatment and prevention plan provided by your naturopathic doctor.