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Know Your Numbers: Gluten Allergy Testing

Did Mom’s Christmas cookies kill you this year? The past several years have seen a BOOM in gluten-free food options. All of the Celiacs are celebrating their expanded menu selections. Many who’ve never felt well after consuming breads and grains are starting to wonder – do I have a gluten allergy too? Kids, college students and even adults are diagnosed with gluten allergy or gluten intolerance each day. We offer blood tests for those who are curious if they too have this allergy. Test results are encouraged to be reviewed with a physician if levels appear to be not-normal.

How can you test for a gluten allergy?

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Christmas cookies kill you this year? You could have a gluten allergy.

A gluten allergy is typically indicated by symptoms like weight loss, stomach problems, bloating and light-colored stools.  The individual with an intolerance is allergic to anything that contains wheat, barley or rye. If not diagnosed properly, individuals can suffer from serious long-term consequences and become malnourished.

There are many ways to test for a gluten allergy. Some physicians do biopsies and other screenings, but at ARCpoint Labs we can help with the blood test portion. Blood tests can determine both Celiac and non-Celiac gluten intolerance. We offer an extensive panel of blood tests that can indicate if certain antibodies (or autoantibodies) are elevated and your body is rejecting gluten. You can request the test yourself, or if a physician has recommend gluten allergy testing, bring us the script and we’ll make sure you test is handled properly.

Blood tests for a gluten allergy

Here are some of the common blood tests we run to determine gluten allergy. We do antibody screens and Celiac profile testing. If you suspect a gluten allergy, come in and we’ll advise you on which tests to run. Or, if you’ve been diagnosed and know what blood test you need, let us collect your blood and promptly deliver the results. Some of the common tests run for gluten allergy include:

  • IgA tTG/ IgG tTG (anti-tissue transglutaminase)
  • IgA EMA (anti-endomysium)
  • IgA/G AGA

What is the normal level for gluten allergy testing?

It’s important to know which lab is running your blood tests. Each lab interprets the results of gluten allergy testing differently and each lab has their own number system they use to determine what is normal and not-normal. Each time you come to ARCpoint Labs, we will make sure the same lab runs your test so that your reports match up and you can compare your levels “apples to apples.”

Celiac & Gluten Sensitivity Allergy Testing in Kansas City

If it’s time to get tested, contact any of our ARCpoint Labs of Kansas City locations for assistance. We don’t require insurance and all of our tests are very affordable. Our trained collectors make the blood draw fast and easy. Our nurse can help you interpret the results and know what to ask your doctor if further evaluation is needed.

Please call us at (785) 371-4739 to learn more or visit any of our three Kansas City ARCpoint Labs locations.


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Know your Numbers: Blood Pressure and Cholesterol

Frankie_Muniz_2012

Learn from Malcom – check and see if your heart is healthy.

Did anyone else see that the beloved “Malcom” found himself out of the middle and into the cardiac ward? Frankie Muniz, the child star of Malcom in the Middle, experienced a mini-stroke several weeks ago. At age 27. An LA Times article reports that 10% of strokes happen to those under age 45. However this famed actor’s incident is a reminder to all – young and old – that heart health is critical and important.

Typical “Heart” Healthy Numbers

Although the cause of Muniz’s stroke has many scratching their heads at a cause (he said he had a poor diet…) oftentimes stroke is a result of high blood pressure. Other heart problems can be a result of bad cholesterol. In order for you to get “heart healthy” this year, know your numbers and make it a goal to get your levels in the normal range.

What is a healthy blood pressure?

Blood pressure is measured by placing a cuff around the top of the arm and inflating it. Your blood pressure level indicates how hard your body is working to circulate blood. If your blood pressure falls into the hypertension ranges, it means your heart is working harder than it should to pump blood throughout your body.

Below is a guide to understanding normal blood pressure levels:

Top number (systolic)

  • Below 120 – Normal
  • 120 – 139 – Pre-hypertension
  • 140-159 – Stage 1 hypertension
  • 160+ – Stage 2 hypertension

Bottom number (diastolic)

  • Below 80 – Normal
  • 80-89 – Pre-hypertension
  • 90-99 – Stage 1 hypertension
  • 100+ – Stage 2 hypertension

Learn more about blood pressure.

What is a healthy cholesterol level?

Cholesterol can be good and bad. Good cholesterol is called HDL and helps keep the bad cholesterol from taking over. Bad cholesterol is called LDL. When there is too much bad cholesterol in your body, you’re at risk of stroke, heart-attack and heart disease. While the body produces some cholesterol naturally, we also receive cholesterol from eating foods that are by-products of animals.

Total cholesterol level

  • Healthy cholesterol range:  Less than 200 mg/dL
  • Borderline high:  200 to 239 mg/dL
  • High cholesterol (at risk for heart disease):  240 mg/dL and above+

HDL cholesterol level

  • Healthy HDL range: 60 mg/dL and above
  • Unhealthy HDL cholesterol level (at risk for heart disease): Less than 40 mg/dL (men) and Less than 50 mg/dL
    (for women)

LDL cholesterol level

  • Healthy LDL range: Less than 100 mg/dL
  • Slightly high:  100 to 129 mg/dL
  • Borderline high: 130 to 159 mg/dL
  • High (at risk for heart disease): 160 to 189 mg/dL
  • Very high (at risk for heart disease): 190 mg/dL and above

Source:  American Heart Foundation

Checking your blood pressure & cholesterol levels in Kansas City

If you want to check your blood pressure or cholesterol levels find one of our three ARCpoint Labs of Kansas City locations. Just walk in to any of our labs to request the test or call us to schedule an appointment at (785) 371-4739. No insurance needed. We make getting a baseline test and then monitoring your progress fast and easy.


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Know Your Numbers: Iron Levels

tired-low-iron-levels-anemia

Constantly tired – even after finals week? Check your iron to make sure you’re not anemic.

Students in Lawrence are probably reeeeeeeeally ready for Christmas break right now! Finals week has descended on college campuses around the country and young co-eds are cramming in study time (and probably a few other things too) before they take off and go home to mom’s milk & cookies for a few weeks. It’s common for college students (or anyone for that matter) to be experiencing tiredness and weakness around this time of year. However, if lower stress levels and better sleep patterns don’t change energy levels once finals are over, it might be a clue that something else is causing low energy. And once place to start:  iron levels.

About Anemia & Low Iron Levels

Anemia means that the body is low on the oxygen-carrying red blood cells. Ample supply of red blood cells is important for many reasons, with one being energy levels. Iron is what enables the body to produce red blood cells, so when you don’t have enough iron, you don’t have enough red blood cells. Therefore, iron-deficient anemia is one cause of low energy.

You can be low on iron for a variety of reasons. Some who don’t eat enough foods with iron (especially those who go the vegetarian/vegan route) have to constantly keep an eye on iron levels. For some, their bodies just don’t absorb iron well which leads to deficiency over time. Iron may also be caused because of a serious condition and internal bleeding. Symptoms of low iron may be small and nearly unnoticeable at first but the impact of low iron will affect your day-to-day over time. And if your tests do show that your iron levels are low and you are anemic, it’s critical that you determine the cause quickly. Low iron can indicate both major AND minor conditions.

What should my iron level be?

Here is a helpful guide for understanding iron levels (thanks to LiveStrong for this helpful info):

  • Normal iron level: 60 to 170 mcg/dL
  • TIB (protein in blood):  240 to 450 mcg/dL
  • Transferrin saturation (divides iron concentration by your TIB):  20 and 50 percent
Also-
  • Adults need about 8 mg of iron each day.
  • Pregnant/breastfeeding women need about 18 mg of iron each day.

What is my iron level?

To determine iron levels, you’ll need an iron/TIB test. This is where we’ll draw some blood, send it on for testing and call you with your iron levels in just a few days. You’ll then know if your iron level is normal, high or low and have the info you need to determine if a doctor’s visit is needed.

If you want to check your iron levels, find one of our three ARCpoint Labs of Kansas City locations. Just walk in to any of our labs to request the test or call us to schedule an appointment at (785) 371-4739. No insurance needed. We make checking your iron levels quick, fast and easy.