Laboratory

Services covered by licensed Clinical Laboratory Scientist 24 hours a day, 7 days a week

Available by Appointment Monday - Friday 8:00 am - 5:00 pm

Call 406-271-3211 for more information 

Now Offering Pre-Operative Lab orders from your doctor can be done in our Laboratory as a convenience to save you time.  

Our Laboratory is covered by licensed Clinical Laboratory Scientist 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  We participate in the American Proficiency Institute Testing program and our results are compared and graded nationally to determine our continued proficiency.  We pride ourselves in quick turnaround for test results with most results being available to the physician within 15 minutes to 3 hours of collection.

Services our Laboratory Provides onsite:

  • Hematology

  • Serology

  • Microbiology

  • Blood Banking

  • General & Special Chemistry

  • Blood Gas Analysis

  • Bacteriology

  • Parasitology

  • Specimen Collection for Drug & Alcohol Testing

 

We also have a large referral list for specialty testing not provided onsite through
Kalispell Regional Heathcare and the Mayo Clinic.

 

BIRTHDAY LABS:$50.00

(PSA additional $50.00)

Blood Tests Available Through the Month of Your Birthday Monday through Friday 8-5

 

What are Lab Draws? 

Also referred to as Health Screenings and Birthday Labs, these are blood samples taken from your arm. The cost of the lab draws is reduced to $50 for your birthday month and at the Pondera Medical Center Health Fair. This lab draw does not require a Provider’s lab order.  This is a cost effective way to gather information about your body’s health, however, it does not substitute a full medical evaluation.  The professionals at Pondera Medical Center recommend that you share your lab results with your provider.  The below explanation of tests is to be used as a reference only. Results and recommendations vary based on a number of factors and therefore must be reviewed by a provider.  
 
Lab draws test for: 

  • Complete Blood Count (CBC): 

    • White Blood Cells (WBC)

    • Red Blood Cells (RBC)

    • Hemoglobin (Hgb)

    • Hematocrit (Hct)

    • Mean Corpuscular Volume (MCV) 

    • Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin Concentration (MCHC)

    • Platelets (PLT)

  • Complete Metabolic Panel: 

    • Sodium & Chloride

    • Potassium 

    • Glucose

    • Blood Urea Nitrogen (BUN)

    • Creatinine 

    • Calcium and Phosphorus

    • Total Protein, Albumin, and Globulin 

    • Albumin and Globulin Ratio (A/G Ratio)

    • Bilirubin 

    • Alkaline Phosphatase 

    • Aspartate aminotransferase (AST)

    • Triglyceride 

  • Total Cholesterol: (Lipid Profile with Cardiac Risk Ratio)

    • Low Density Lipoprotein (LDL)

    • High Density Lipoprotein (HDL) 

  • Thyroid Screen (TSH) 

  • Phosphorus & Uric Acid

FURTHER EXPLANATION OF TESTS 

CBC- Complete Blood Count This test includes the following information about the cells in your blood:

 

WBC (White Blood Cells) – Number of white blood cells in thousands.  White blood cells are our body’s defenders against infection.  These include granulocytes and lymphocytes.

 

RBC (Red Blood Cells)  - Number of red blood cells in millions.  Red blood cells carry oxygen to all the cells of the body.

Hgb (Hemoglobin) – The substance found in RBS’s that attaches oxygen to the red blood cell so that it can be carried to all of the cells of the body.

Hct (Hematocrit) – Tells what percentage of your total blood volume is red blood cells.

MCV (Mean Corpuscular Volume) - Indicates red blood cell size.

MCHC (Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin Concentration)  -A ratio of MCV to MCH and indicates cell size. 

PLT (Platelets) – Essential elements for blood clotting.

 

Complete Metabolic Panel 

Sodium and Chloride are electrolytes controlled by the kidneys and adrenal glands.  They are important to the functioning of nerves, muscles, and most cells.

Potassium is an electrolyte important for the proper functioning of nerves and muscles, especially the heart.  The kidneys control potassium levels.  Abnormal values whether high or low, require medical evaluation.  This is especially important to monitor if you are taking diuretics or heart medication.

Glucose – Every cell in the body uses glucose, a blood sugar, for energy.  Values of greater than 140 in a fasting patient or greater that 200 in a non-fasting patient require further evaluation by your physician.  This may be an indication of diabetes.

BUN (Blood Urea Nitrogen) is a waste product excreted by the kidney.  High levels may mean poor kidney function.  A high protein diet or strenuous exercise may also raise this level.  Low levels are common and are not of medical significance.

Creatinine is a waste product excreted by the kidneys, which is not affected by diet or exercise.  High levels may indicate poor kidney function. While low levels are not of medical significance.

 

Calcium and Phosphorus –The kidneys and parathyroid gland control these minerals, which are found mostly in bone.  These minerals are important for normal cellular activity.

Total Protein, Albumin, and Globulin are normal proteins found in the blood.  They are an indicator of general health.  Albumin attaches to an carries many substances, including medications, to different areas of the body. Globulins are important in combating disease.

A/G Ratio (Albumin and Globulin Ratio) is a calculation comparing albumin and globulin values.  If both albumin and globulin values are normal, a high or low A/G Ratio is not significant.

Bilirubin is the by-product of red blood cell destruction and is the pigment in bile.  The liver processes bilirubin.  High values may be an indication of liver disease.

Alkaline Phosphatase is an enzyme found in both the liver and bone.  High levels of these enzymes may indicate liver or bone disease.  Low levels are not significant.

AST (Aspartate aminotransferase) is an enzyme found in heart, muscles and liver.  Damage to or disease of heart, muscles, or liver may result in elevated levels of these enzymes.  Use of alcohol or medication may also increase AST levels.

Triglyceride – a blood fat affected by what you have recently eaten.  Fasting for 12 hours prior to testing is necessary for proper evaluation.

Total Cholesterol is a blood fat necessary for normal vitamin absorption and hormone synthesis.  Elevated levels may be associated with the risk of heart disease and should be evaluated by your physician.  Total cholesterol is further divided into:

LDL (Low Density Lipoprotein) 60-70% of total cholesterol is LDL.  Elevated levels of LDL, the “BAD” Cholesterol, are associated with an increased risk of Coronary Heart Disease.  LDL in combination with other risk factors is thought to be the most accurate predictor of Coronary Heart Disease risk.  Fasting for 12 hours prior to testing is necessary for proper evaluation.

HDL (High Density Lipoprotein) 20-30% of total cholesterol is HDL, the “GOOD” Cholesterol.  These HDL fractions of cholesterol are thought to confer a measure of protection against Coronary Heart Disease.

   

 TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone) is a hormone produced by the pituitary gland that stimulates the thyroid gland.  Measurement of TSH is considered a primary way to diagnose thyroid disorders.

Uric Acid is a waste product excreted in the urine.  Elevated levels may be seen with arthritis, gout, and kidney problems.  Low levels are not significant.


 

 

What is a PSA Screening?

 

Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA) test is a blood sample from your arm.  It is analyzed for Prostate-Specific Antigen and if there is an abnormally higher level you will be further checked for prostate infection, inflammation, enlargement or cancer.  According to the American Cancer Society, Prostate cancer is the third-leading cause of cancer death in men and about 1 in 7 men will develop prostate cancer over the course of his lifetime.  The American Cancer Society recommends that beginning at age 50, men who are at average risk of prostate cancer have a conversation with their health care provider about PSA testing.  The Society also recommends that men with higher risk (men that are older, obese, and/or African American and those with a close relative diagnosed with prostate cancer before the age of 65) of prostate cancer start screenings between ages 40 & 45. Early detection is vital: if the cancer is found in stage 1 or local stage, the chance of the 5-year survival rate approaches 100%, however, the 5-year survival rate for distant-stage prostate cancer is only 28%.  The cost of PSA screening is reduced to $50 during your birthday month and at the Pondera Medical Center Health Fair held annually in late September/early October.

 

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