I use specialty labs for testing the following issues:
- Toxic Elements( heavy metals such as mercury and lead)
- Digestive Problems
- Nutritional balance
- Gene damage that will effect how our environmental exposure will cause disease or health.
Heavy Metal Contamination With Lead, Mercury And Other Toxic Minerals
Toxic Minerals Genova Diagnostics.
This is a 24 hour urine collection that tests for minerals such as lead, mercury, arsenic and uranium. Results show which toxic minerals have been chelated and excreted through your urine. It does not tell us your total toxic load. We have found, once detoxification begins, these levels may increase as the toxins are released before they come into the normal range.
GASTROINTESTINAL ( DIGESTION)
CDSA 2.0 Genova Diagnostics
This is a complete evaluation of digestive function, parasitology, and large intestinal bacterial balance.
Comprehensive Parasitology. Genova Diagnostics
This tests for intestinal bacterial balance and parasites.
Intestinal permeability. Genova Diagnostics
This checks for “leaky gut syndrome” which is caused by intestinal inflammation.Your intestines have intelligence. All nutrients and toxins go through the same tube. A healthy intestine allows nutrients to pass through into your blood, while excreting undigested food and waste products. An inflamed intestine will allow particles of food into your blood causing and allergic reaction. This test does not evaluate the cause of the inflammation
Anti-Candida Antibodies Genova Diagnostics.
This is the best test for systemic candida. It indicates your body’s overall immune response, if candida is present in your intestines, if candida is growing into the mucous membranes in your body and /or you have an allergy to candida and not an infection. It allows us to be very specific about your problem and the best possible approach to treatment.
Many of us have been told we have candida, or we have self-diagnosed based on our own research. The treatment for systemic candida infection is a very restrictive diet, alkalinize your ph, supplements and/or expensive pharmaceuticals. There is no point in treating Candida if you don’t have it.
Food Allergies Meridian Valley Labs or Genova Diagnostics
Food allergy testing looks at the IGG and or IGA immune response to a list of foods. Testing for allergies with blood tests is controversial in allopathic medicine. Allopathic medicine prefer doing skin testing. I have found blood testing to be extremely helpful. Avoiding the foods to which you are allergic can yield major improvements in digestive function and health. There are some foods to which you will always be allergic; however most food allergies occur because of leaky gut syndrome. Avoiding foods for six months may allow eating these foods in moderation in the future.
Nutra-Eval Genova Diagnostics.
This is an excellent evaluation of your nutritional status. It looks at nutrient deficiencies, and evaluates creb and citric acid cycles which are basic to our production of energy in our body. Nurta-Eval includes:
- Metabolic Analysis
- Amino Acids Analysis
- Essential and Metabolic Fatty Acid Analysis
- Elemental Analysis
- Oxidative Stress Analysis
Micro-nutrient Testing Spectracell
This takes your white blood cells and puts them into a bath of a specific nutrient. If the cells replicate rapidly when exposed to the nutrient, you are lacking in that nutrient.
If you want to evaluate what supplements you need to be taking, you should be off all supplements for 6 to 12 weeks before testing. If you want to evaluate your current supplement regime, you can stay on your supplements. These tests will tell you what you are missing. They will not tell you if you are taking too much of a nutrient.
GENOVATIONS GENOVA DIAGNOSTICS
This series of tests evaluates genetic variations, called single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). These are blood tests and swabs of the cheek. They are taken in my office and mailed to Genova Diagnostics.
Once the evaluation is done, I send the results to Dr Joe Veltmann. His computer program creates a list of what food and medications you need to use and or to avoid, in order to decrease the risk associated with these SNPs.
OSTEOGENOMIC PROFILE Evaluates genetic variations in bone formation, breakdown and inflammation, including key regulatory mechanisms affecting calcium and Vitamin D3 metabolism. This is for women with osteoporosis who are not responding to treatment.
ESTROGENOMIC PROFILE evaluates estrogen metabolism for cancer risk , coagulation, cardiovascular risk and osteoporosis. This is for women who have a family risk of strokes, deep vein thrombosis and/or gynecologic cancers, and who desire to use hormone replacement.
IMMUNOGENOMIC PROFILE for people with autoimmune and inflammatory diseases. Evaluates genes that modulate immune and inflammatory activity, potential defects in immune system defense and stimulate mechanisms underlying chronic overactive inflammatory response.
DETOXIGENOMIC PROFILE evaluates SNPs associated with increased risk of impaired detoxification capacity especially when exposed to environmental toxins. It will also identify people who may be susceptible to adverse drug reactions.
CARDIOGENOMICS PLUS PROFILE evaluates variations in genes that modulate blood pressure regulation, lipid balance, nutrient metabolism, inflammation and oxidative stress. This can be used with people who have either a personal history or family history of cardiovascular disease.
(Wording for the above was taken from Genova Diagnostics Professional Guide July 2012 Edition.)
PRE-MENOPAUSAL MENSTRUATING WOMEN
For those of us who are still having periods testing for hormones is a challenge. Our ovaries produce hormones in a pulse so levels vary markedly minute to minute.We can test for all hormones using a twenty-four hour urine collection. The results reveal what hormones have been used during that day,as well as the balance of daily hormonal changes through the cycle. If you are testing for hormones, it is very important to note where you are in your cycle, i.e. what day from the first day of your flow.
Saliva tests that collect samples throughout the cycle can also be affected by the time it is collected and your health status when you collect it.
If you have irregular cycles, the information from one cycle may not be true for the next. These are the challenges of interpreting results for a woman who is still cycling.
Rhythm Plus Genova Diagnostics
This test has you collect saliva eleven times through your cycle. It is designed for women who have a 28 day cycle. If you have a shorter or longer cycle we will need to adjust the days you do the collection to fit you. Rhythm Plus evaluates cyclic estradiol, progesterone and a one day sample for testosterone. In my opinion this is the best test for ovarian function in a cyclic woman.
Hormone Blood Work Standard Medical Lab.
We can test for estradiol, progesterone, testosterone DHEA and cortisol in blood. Variation of these levels makes interpretation challenging. If you are doing well on your hormones, this is a good way to verify that your levels are in a safe range.
During the process of moving into menopause, testing for estrogen is really useless because the levels vary so much minute to minute and day to day. Your body’s response is a truer indication of estrogenic activity. Progesterone and testosterone are more likely to be the hormones that need supplementation in peri- menopausal women, and can be tested through a standard medical lab.
After using saliva testing at really good labs for six years, I was disappointed with the results. I saw levels that made no sense, given the women’s experience. I saw levels that were pretty much impossible because the women had no severe symptoms. When I tried to correct the hormone dose based on saliva levels, many women did not respond well. I disagree that saliva test reveal levels of the hormones bathing our cells. I believe it shows the level of hormone in our saliva gland. For this reason I rarely use Saliva testing for hormones other than Cortisol and DHEA.
Hormonal Health Genova Diagnostics
This is a blood test that evaluates Estradiol, Estrone, Estriol, Progesterone, Testosterone, Sex Hormone Binding Globulin, DHEA and a ratio of 2:16 hydroxyestrone (2:16OHE1).
The 2:16 OHE1 ratio looks at how you are breaking down Estrone through your liver. We have three pathways for this conversion. 2 OHE1 is benign. 16OHE1 is mildly carcinogenic. We know that if your 2 to 16 ratio is normal, your risk for gynecological cancers is lowered. If your ratio is abnormal we can support the benign pathway by using an herbal support. The other option is to stop using estrogen.
I use Genova Diagnostics as they have the range for healthy normal menopausal women. I feel this lab gives results that are more precise than the standard commercial labs.
Complete Hormones Genova Diagnostics
This is a 24 hour urine collection test that looks at women’s sex and adrenal hormones. It evaluates the by-products of hormonal utilization, telling what you have used in a 24 hour period. It also evaluates the three metabolites of Estrone and gives a more accurate idea of cancer risk from HRT. It looks at the balance of catabolic ( breaking down) hormones with anabolic ( building up) hormones. An imbalance towards the catabolic hormonal activity leads to the degeneration we associate with aging and chronic illness. Too much anabolic activity can lead to brain, kidney and adrenal damage as often seen in athletes using anabolic steroids.
ADRENAL STRESS PROFILE Saliva
This test evaluates your cortisol production at four times during the day. Cortisol has a normal rhythm of being high in the morning, lower as the day progresses and lowest at night before sleep. Stress can alter this rhythm causing afternoon fatigue and insomnia. It is a fairly inexpensive way to look at adrenal function, especially for women experiencing insomnia.
URINE ADRENAL TESTING MERIDIAN VALLEY LAB AND GENOVA DIAGNOSTICS
This is a 24 hour urine test that evaluates the fourteen adrenal hormones and 5-a reductase and 11Dydroxysteroid dehydrogenase I and II activity. It evaluates the end result of adrenal activity. I find this helpful in knowing what steps to take to resolve adrenal malfunction.
We are now in controversial territory. There are many ideas about how to address thyroid in a functional way. Here is how I address thyroid problems.
Thyroid Blood Tests
These have a reputation in the literature of being inaccurate. I do not believe this is true. It may have been years ago, and now the testing for thyroid’s main hormones and antibodies are quite accurate. The problem is that practitioners may test only TSH and not include Free T 4,Free or Total T3, Reverse T3 and AntiTPO Antibodies
- TSH is a hormone produced by the pituitary. It goes up when your pituitary feels you do not have enough thyroid hormone and goes down when it feels you have too much. So TSH tells us what your body thinks about your thyroid function.
- T4 is the hormone your thyroid produces. 80% of thyroid production is T4. T4 is converted in your body to the active thyroid hormone T3. It can also be bound by proteins in your body making it unavailable. The active form is called Free T4. Total T4 tells us about how well your thyroid is producing hormones. T4 is converted in our bodies to T3 which also comes in free and bound forms.
- T3. Free T3 is the active thyroid hormone that determines your cellular response to thyroid. T3 binds to thyroid receptors on your cell membrane telling the cell to produce energy.This is a simplistic description for our purpose. Your T3 levels change rapidly so Free T3 can be inaccurate concerning your thyroid function. All these levels must be looked at together to get the full picture.
- Reverse T3. Your body is able to convert T4 placing one molecule in a different alignment on the organic chemistry ring that makes a hormone what it is. This molecule is similar to T3 and will bind to the T3 receptor on the cell wall, but will not send the message to the cell to make energy. A high Reverse T3 can block receptor uptake of Free T3 thus causing the symptoms of hypothyroidism when TSH and Free T3 are normal.
- Anit-TPO Antibodies indicate an autoimmune cause of the thyroid dysfunction. Elevated TPO antibodies can also cause symptoms of bulging eyes and goiter, even in the face of normal thyroid function.
If you have insurance that covers standard blood tests, a thorough thyroid evaluation can be done by standard commercial labs accurately. If you do not have insurance, Genova Diagnostics currently offers a complete thyroid evaluation for $186. (subject to change)
For an appointment contact us