Understanding Your Pet's Bloodwork
Many times your veterinarian will order different types of bloodwork for your pet to help diagnose a problem. Hopefully the following listing will help you undertand what it all means.
COMPLETE BLOOD COUNT: A CBC gives information on hydration status, anemia, infection, the blood's clotting ability and the status of the immune system. A CBC includes:
PCV(HCT)hematocrit- measures the percentage of red blood cells. Helps to detect anemia or hydration status.
Hgb and MCHC(hemoglobin and mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration)-the oxygen carrying components of red blood cells.
WBC(white blood cell count)-measue the body's white blood cells.These indicate if a disease or immune problem are present.
GRANS and L/M (granulocytes and lymphocytes/monocytes) specific types of white blood cells.
EOS (eosinophils)specific types of white blood cells that may indicate allergic or parasitic infections.
PLT (platelet count)measures cells that help with blood clotting RETICS (reticulocytes)-immature red blood cells. It may indicate regenerative anemia.
BLOOD CHEMISTRIES-these tests are used to evaluate organ functions, hormone levels, electrolyte status as well as others.
ALB-(albumin)this is a serum protein. It helps evaluate hydration,and bleeding as well as kidney, liver and intestinal diseases.
ALKP-(alkaline phosphate)this may indicate liver disease or Cushing's Disease if it is elevated.
AMYL (amylase)this may indicate pancreatitis or kidney disease
ALT (alanine aminotransferase)this is an indicator of active liver disease
AST(aspartate aminotransferase)increases of this may indicate liver, heart, or skelatal muscle damage.
BUN(blood urea nitrogen) this represents kidney function.
Ca(calcium) deviations in this mineral can indicate a variety of diseases.
CHOL(cholesterol)changes in this can help further define diagnoses of thyroid conditions, liver disease and diabetes.
CL(chloride)elevations in this electrolyte may indicate dehydration.
Cortisol- a hormone that helps determine Cushing or Addison's disease
CREA(creatinine)helps measure kidney function
ELECTROLYTES: these tests evaluate sodium, chloride and potassium levels, which may indicate kidney disease, cardiac function and other problems.
GLOB(globulins) a blood protein that increases with chronic inflammation and certain diseases.
GLU(glucose) is a blood sugar. Increases can indicate diabetes while decreases may cause collapse or seizures.
K(potassium)this electrolyte decreases with vomiting and diarrhea. Increases may indicate kidney disease, dehydration or cardiac arrest.
LIP(lipase)this enzyme may indicate pancreatitis
Na(sodium) this electrolyte is lost with vomiting, diarrhea, kidney and Addison's disease. It helps to indicate hydration status.
PHOS(phosphorus)when this is elevated it may indicate liver or thyroid disease or bleeding disorders.
TBIL(total bilirubin)this test helps identify liver problems and certain types of anemia.
TP(total protein) indicates hydration status and additional information about the liver and kidneys.
T4(tyroxine)is a thyroid hormone, increases or decreases indicate thyroid disease.