All Bone and Joint Tests

Aside from your medical history, bone and joint lab tests can help your doctor to diagnose if you have any bone or joint conditions. Here are some of the laboratory tests that you can undergo:

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The Bone-Specific Alkaline Phosphatase (BSAP) assay provides a general index of bone formation and a specific index of total osteoblast activity. BSAP and osteocalcin are the most effective markers of bone formation and are particularly useful for monitoring bone formation therapies and antiresorptive therapies.

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Measurement of the levels of bilirubin is used in the diagnosis and treatment of liver, hemolytic, hematologic, and metabolic disorders, including hepatitis and gall bladder obstruction. The assessment of direct bilirubin is helpful in the differentiation of hepatic disorders. The increase in total bilirubin associated with obstructive jaundice is primarily due to the direct (conjugated) fraction. Both direct and indirect bilirubin are increased in the serum with hepatitis.

Increased CRP levels are found in inflammatory conditions including: bacterial infection, rheumatic fever, active arthritis, myocardial infarction, malignancies and in the post-operative state. This test cannot detect the relatively small elevations of CRP that are associated with increased cardiovascular risk.

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Serum calcium is involved in the regulation of neuromuscular and enzyme activity, bone metabolism and blood coagulation. Calcium blood levels are controlled by a complex interaction of parathyroid hormone, vitamin D, calcitonin and adrenal cortical steroids. Calcium measurements are useful in the diagnosis of parathyroid disease, some bone disorders and chronic renal disease. A low level of calcium may result in tetany.

Urinary calcium reflects dietary intake, rate of calcium absorption by the intestine and bone resorption. Urinary calcium is used primarily to evaluate parathyroid function and the effects of vitamin D. A significant number of patients with primary hyperparathyroidism will have elevated urinary calcium. However, there are other clinical entities that may be associated with increased urine calcium: Sarcoidosis, Paget's disease of bone, vitamin D intoxication, hyperthyroidism and glucocorticoid excess. Decreased urine calcium is seen with thiazide diuretics, vitamin D deficiency and familial hypocalciuric hypercalcemia.

NTx is useful to assess bone resorption in patients with metabolic bone disease and monitor therapy to slow or halt osteoporotic bone loss. A decline of 30% or more of NTx over a six-month period suggests effective therapy.

NTx is useful to assess bone resorption in patients with metabolic bone disease. The test is also useful in monitoring therapy to slow or halt osteoporotic bone loss. A decline of 30% or more of NTx over a six-month period suggests effective therapy.

CTx is useful to assess bone resorption in patients with metabolic bone disease. The test is also useful in monitoring therapy to slow or halt osteoporotic bone loss.

A Complete Blood Count (CBC) Panel is used as a screening test for various disease states including anemia, leukemia and inflammatory processes.

A CBC blood test includes the following biomarkers: WBC, RBC, Hemoglobin, Hematocrit, MCV, MCH, MCHC, RDW, Platelet count, Neutrophils, Lymphs, Monocytes, Eos, Basos, Neutrophils (Absolute), Lymphs (Absolute), Monocytes(Absolute), Eos (Absolute), Basos (Absolute), Immature Granulocytes, Immature Grans (Abs)

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Cortisol is increased in Cushing's Disease and decreased in Addison's Disease (adrenal insufficiency). Patient needs to have the specimen collected between 7 a.m.-9 a.m.

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Cortisol is increased in Cushing's Disease and decreased in Addison's Disease (adrenal insufficiency).

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Cortisol is increased in Cushing's Disease and decreased in Addison's Disease (adrenal insufficiency).

DHEA-S is the sulfated form of DHEA and is the major androgen produced by the adrenal glands. This test is used in the differential diagnosis of hirsute or virilized female patients and for the diagnosis of isolated premature adrenarche and adrenal tumors. About 10% of hirsute women with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) have elevated DHEA-S but normal levels of other androgens.

Dr. Weatherby’s  Additional biomarkers for Bone Health Evaluation -  Use with Blood Chemistry Analysis Standard Panel.

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Measuring the circulating levels of estradiol is important for assessing the ovarian function and monitoring follicular development for assisted reproduction protocols. Estradiol plays an essential role throughout the human menstrual cycle. Elevated estradiol levels in females may also result from primary or secondary ovarian hyperfunction. Very high estradiol levels are found during the induction of ovulation for assisted reproduction therapy or in pregnancy. Decreased estradiol levels in females may result from either lack of ovarian synthesis (primary ovarian hypofunction and menopause) or a lesion in the hypothalamus-pituitary axis (secondary ovarian hypofunction). Elevated estradiol levels in males may be due to increased aromatization of androgens, resulting in gynecomastia.

IMPORTANT - Note this Estradiol test is not for children that have yet to start their menstrual cycle.  If this test is ordered for a child that has yet to begin their menstrual cycle Quest Diagnostics labs will substitute in Estradiol, Ultrasensitive LC/MS/MS - #30289 at an additional charge of $34

This test is useful in the differential diagnosis of pituitary and gonadal insufficiency and in children with precocious puberty.

Elevated GGT is found in all forms of liver disease. Measurement of GGT is used in the diagnosis and treatment of alcoholic cirrhosis, as well as primary and secondary liver tumors. It is more sensitive than alkaline phosphatase, the transaminases, and leucine aminopeptidase in detecting obstructive jaundice, cholangitis, and cholecystitis. Normal levels of GGT are seen in skeletal diseases; thus, GGT in serum can be used to ascertain whether a disease, suggested by elevated alkaline phosphatase, is skeletal or hepatobiliary.

Plasma glucose levels may be abnormally high (hyperglycemia) or abnormally low (hypoglycemia). Glucose measurements are used in the diagnosis and treatment of carbohydrate metabolic disorders.

A Hemoglobin (Hb) A1c Blood Test evaluates the average amount of glucose in the blood. The A1c test will help determine whether you are at a higher risk of developing diabetes; to help diagnose diabetes and prediabetes; to monitor diabetes and to aid in treatment decisions.

To assist with control of blood glucose levels, the American Diabetes Association (ADA) has recommended glycated hemoglobin testing (HbA1c) twice a year for patients with stable glycemia, and quarterly for patients with poor glucose control. Interpretative ranges are based on ADA guidelines.

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Elevated levels of homocysteine are observed in patients at risk for coronary heart disease and stroke.

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For diagnosis and monitoring of diabetes and insulin-secreting tumors.

Lactate Dehydrogenase (LD) (LDH)

Elevations in serum lactate dehydrogenase occur from myocardial infarction, liver disease, pernicious and megaloblastic anemia, pulmonary emboli, malignancies, and muscular dystrophy

A lipid panel includes:Total cholesterol —this test measures all of the cholesterol in all the lipoprotein particles.High-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) — measures the cholesterol in HDL particles; often called "good cholesterol" because it removes excess cholesterol and carries it to the liver for removal.Low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) — calculates the cholesterol in LDL particles; often called "bad cholesterol" because it deposits excess cholesterol in walls of blood vessels, which can contribute to atherosclerosis. Usually, the amount of LDL cholesterol (LDL-C) is calculated using the results of total cholesterol, HDL-C, and triglycerides.Triglycerides — measures all the triglycerides in all the lipoprotein particles; most is in the very low-density lipoproteins (VLDL).Very low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (VLDL-C) — calculated from triglycerides/5; this formula is based on the typical composition of VLDL particles.Non-HDL-C — calculated from total cholesterol minus HDL-C.Cholesterol/HDL ratio — calculated ratio of total cholesterol to HDL-C.

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Bones and joints play an integral role in the body. The bones provide a solid framework, and the joints and fluid in the joints work to keep the body mobile while working together with the soft tissue and muscles. Working together, they support the weight of the body.  

Unfortunately, the bones and joints may become weak. Let's examine some of the reasons that the bones and joints may become weak and the various reasons that may cause them to become weak.  

Afterwards, we'll learn why and how lab testing can help keep the joints, bones, and nervous system in peak condition.  

Factors That Affect Bones and Joints 

  • Aging - Over time, aging can lead to gradual weakening and deterioration of the bones and joints. 
  • Injury - Bones and or joints may become injured due to overexertion or an accident. 
  • Hereditary Factors - Genetic predisposition can cause the bones and joints to be more susceptible to many bone and joint conditions. 

Conditions Impacting Bones and Joints 

According to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, some health conditions may impact the bones and joints. There may be skin diseases as well. 

  • Osteoporosis - When bone mineral density and bone mass are gradually reduced, osteoporosis is the outcome. 
  • Scoliosis - Scoliosis produces a side curve of the spinal column. 
  • Paget's Disease - This is a bone disorder that causes bones to grow bigger and weaken. 
  • Osteopetrosis - A rare disorder giving rise to abnormal bone growth and bone density. 
  • Tendonitis - Brought on via repetitive injuries to tendons. 
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis or RA. - An immune system malfunction causes the body to attack the linings of the joints mistakenly. It's an inflammatory kind of arthritis. 

Signs And Symptoms of Joint and Bone Conditions 

Here are some of the signs and symptoms of joint and bone conditions:  

  • Brittle, weak bones 
  • Joint pain 
  • Bones that are deformed 
  • Inflammation in joints 
  • Pain in bones 
  • C or S-shaped spinal curves 

Lab Tests for Joints and Bones 

Other than a complete medical history, a lab test can help a doctor diagnose bones and joints issues. Here are a few of the lab tests that can be given: 

Blood Tests: These can measure a variety of components in the blood. Helpful in detecting rheumatoid arthritis as well as other joint and bone disorders.  

Functional Lab Panels for Bone and Joint Tests 

X-Rays: Imagery testing can point out abnormalities. 

  • CT or Computed Tomography and MRI or Magnetic Resonance Imaging - These are also imagery tests that can offer a more detailed image giving more details on bone and joint structure than an X-ray can show.  

FAQs On Bone and Joint Lab Tests 

Which lab tests are done for bone and joint disorders? 

Bone and joint disorders can be diagnosed via various tests such as X-rays, CT scans, an MRI, evaluations of bones, and bone-specific alkaline phosphatase testing

What Does a Bone Profile Blood Test Reveal? 

This test will reveal and measure proteins, enzymes, and minerals in bone turnover. They can potentially diagnose bone issues.  

Benefits Of Bone and Joint Lab Tests from Ulta Lab Tests 

Testing helps people stay on top of their health needs and manage and monitor their bone and joint health status. Lab tests from Ulta Lab Tests are easy and convenient to order and receive results. Once you have your results, please consult your healthcare provider to obtain their recommended next steps to improve or maintain your health.

Ulta Lab Tests offer highly accurate and reliable tests to help you make informed decisions about bones and joints' health issues.  

Benefits of using Ulta Lab Tests include: 

  • Confidential and secure results
  • No insurance referral required 
  • Affordable pricing
  • 100% guaranteed satisfaction 

Order your bone and joint health lab tests with Ulta Lab Tests