If you're having surgery—even a minor procedure—the doctor may order blood tests. While interpreting blood tests are best left to a physician, it may be helpful to understand what the test is looking for, and what's considered a "normal" result. There are hundreds of different blood tests that can be performed in a lab, but the most common are performed routinely before and after surgery; these tests are very common and should not be cause for alarm.

Blood testing is often done after a procedure to look for bleeding, and to make sure that the organs are functioning well after surgery. Many times these tests are performed routinely, often the night after surgery.

This does not mean that there is an expectation that something is wrong, most often these tests confirm that everything is going well after surgery. Patients in the ICU can expect to have more frequent blood tests. Also known as a blood chemistry, or a chemistry panel, this test looks at the levels of essential enzymes in the blood and also checks kidney function. The seven tests included in a Chem 7 include:.

A complete blood countor CBC, looks at the different cells that make up whole blood. These tests, known collectively as a coagulation panellook at how quickly blood clots.

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Elevated clotting times can cause problems in surgery, during which bleeding is often expected. Liver function studies, also known as LFTs, are done to determine if the liver is functioning normally. Elevated numbers can indicate poor liver function or liver damage.

An additional test, called a GGT, may be added to the liver panel. An arterial blood gascommonly called an ABG, looks at how the respiratory system is functioning and how much oxygen is in the blood.

Abnormal results may indicate that the blood is low in oxygen, that the patient is breathing too much or too little on a ventilator during the surgical procedureor that they need additional oxygen. The ABG is typically performed at least once a day when the patient is on a ventilator for an extended period of time. The results are used to determine if any changes in ventilator settings are necessary. ABG Interpretation is very challenging and is typically done by physicians or providers.

ABO Typing is the medical term for determining the patient's blood type. This is done prior to surgery, so blood can be given in the operating room if necessary.

You may be asked to sign a consent form for the administration of blood prior to your surgery, even if a transfusion is not a routine part of the procedure, in case the need arises. A blood culture is a process where a small sample of your blood is drawn and taken to the lab where it is placed on a growing sterile medium that "feeds" bacteria. The sample is kept warm and after a few days, it is checked to see if bacteria is growing. If bacteria is growing, it is likely that the same bacteria is growing in your blood.

This is a scientific way to choose the best antibiotic for your infection without giving you multiple antibiotics and hoping one works well. While it is helpful to have a general understanding of lab results and what they mean, the healthcare provider is ultimately responsible for interpreting the results and determining how to respond to them.

Interpreting lab results is a skill that is honed over the years, so don't feel a need to understand every nuance of your lab results. It is far more important that you listen closely when the provider is explaining their plan and how they would like to proceed with your care.

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Science Laboratory Safety Signs

US National Library of Medicine. Basic metabolic panel. Mount Sinai.So to empower my readers, here is a simplified guide to understanding your blood test results.

Today, we have a wide range of testing options to choose from, with blood tests being among the most basic. Blood tests allow a doctor to see a detailed analysis of any disease markers, the nutrients and waste products in your blood as well as how various organs e. During a physical examination, your doctor will often draw blood for chemistry and complete blood count CBC tests as well as a lipid profile, which measures cholesterol and related elements.

Here is a brief explanation of the abbreviations used in measurements followed by descriptions of several common test components. Anything higher may indicate liver damage. Albumin Healthy range: 3. Elevated protein levels could indicate a health condition in need of attention. Bilirubin Healthy range: 0. High values may indicate a problem with kidney function. A number of medications and a diet high in protein can also raise BUN levels.

High levels of creatinine, a by-product of muscle contractions, are excreted through the kidneys and suggest reduced kidney function.

Calcium Healthy range: 9. Excess chloride may indicate an overly acidic environment in the body. It also could be a red flag for dehydration, multiple myeloma, kidney disorders, or adrenal gland dysfunction. Creatinine Healthy range: 0. The fasting blood sugar test is done after at least 6 hours without food or drink other than water.

Phosphorus Healthy range: 2. Too much phosphorus could indicate a problem with kidneys or the parathyroid gland. Alcohol abuse, long-term antacid use, excessive intake of diuretics or vitamin D, and malnutrition can also elevate phosphorus levels. Potassium Healthy range: 3. Diuretics, drugs that are often taken for high blood pressure, can cause low levels of potassium. Irregularities in sodium levels may indicate dehydration; disorders of the adrenal glands; excessive intake of salt, corticosteroids, or pain-relieving medications; or problems with the liver or kidneys.

The lipid panel is a collection of tests measuring different types of cholesterol and triglycerides fats in your bloodstream. Total cholesterol General rules best to worst :. HDL Good cholesterol General rules:. Also known as good cholesterol, HDL high-density lipoprotein protects against heart disease.

Low scores are risk factors for heart disease.

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LDL Bad cholesterol General rules best to worst :. Also known as bad cholesterol, LDL low-density lipoprotein is the substance that clogs arteries and is linked to heart disease.During these challenging times, we guarantee we will work tirelessly to support you.

We will continue to give you accurate and timely information throughout the crisis, and we will deliver on our mission — to help everyone in the world learn how to do anything — no matter what. Thank you to our community and to all of our readers who are working to aid others in this time of crisis, and to all of those who are making personal sacrifices for the good of their communities.

We will get through this together. Learning how to read your medical laboratory results means you can better understand your symptoms and how your body is functioning.

One of the most common blood tests analyzes complete blood count, or CBC. A low hemoglobin count suggests anemia, though too many RBCs can indicate bone marrow disease. If your doctor is checking your cholesterol, your total number should be less thanwith your HDL levels greater than 50 and your LDL numbers lower than Blood sugar or glucose tests measure the amount of glucose circulating in your bloodstream after fasting.

laboratory symbols and meaning

People at high risk for diabetes have blood sugar levels between and For more tips from our Medical co-author, including how to understand urine lab tests, keep reading! Did this summary help you? Yes No. Log in Facebook Loading Google Loading Civic Loading No account yet? Create an account. We use cookies to make wikiHow great.

By using our site, you agree to our cookie policy. As the COVID situation develops, our hearts ache as we think about all the people around the world that are affected by the pandemic Read morebut we are also encouraged by the stories of our readers finding help through our site. Article Edit. Learn why people trust wikiHow. There are 21 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. Explore this Article Understanding Blood Tests.Depending upon the scientific research being conducted, a lab can be filled with dangerous chemicals, radioactive substances, biological specimens, sharp instruments, breakable glassware, and flammable objects.

Thus, those working in labs need to be keenly aware of the many dangers associated with these items. In order to maintain a safe workplace and avoid accidents, lab safety symbols and signs need to be posted throughout the workplace. Researchers, staff, and visitors should note and understand the hazard communication information on the laboratory safety signs, including specific hazardous agents biological, chemical, radiologicalphysical hazards lasers, magnetic fields present in the space, stated precautions no food or drink allowedand required personal protective equipment lab coats, eye protection, gloves, etc.

The following laboratory safety symbols warn of possible dangers in the laboratory to help lab professionals keep safe and informed. Disclaimer: Please note that the graphics below represent our own creative take on the standard laboratory safety signs and symbols and are not meant to be used in the laboratory.

Look for the gloves safety symbol to identify when hand protection should be worn for handling hazardous materials, even in small quantities. It is important to choose the appropriate type of glove for the hazard present, such as chemical resistant gloves, heat resistant gloves, etc.

Be aware that no chemical resistant glove protects against all chemical hazards. Read the Material Safety Data Sheet for guidance on the appropriate type of glove to wear, or consult with lab supply distributors for glove vs.

Be aware that some materials may cause reactions in some workers such as allergies to latex. Make sure the gloves fit properly. The laboratory boots required safety symbol indicates when street shoes are not adequate for certain lab-related tasks.

A Visual Guide to Science Safety Symbols in a Laboratory

Chemical resistant overshoes or boots should be used to avoid possible exposure to corrosive chemicals or large quantities of solvents or water that might penetrate normal footwear.

Leather shoes tend to absorb chemicals and may have to be discarded if contaminated with a hazardous material. The protective clothing safety symbol indicates that a lab coat or other protective clothing needs to be worn. There are several types of lab coats for different types of protection.

Cotton protects against flying objects, sharp or rough edges, and is usually treated with a fire retardant.

Since many synthetic fabrics can adhere to skin when burning, cotton is the most preferred laboratory clothing fabric. Wool protects against splashes of molten materials, small quantities of acid, and small flames.

laboratory symbols and meaning

Synthetic fibers protect against sparks and infrared or ultraviolet radiation. Aluminized and reflective clothing protect against radiant heat. The eye protection safety sign indicates there is the possibility of chemical, environmental, radiological, or mechanical irritants and hazards in the laboratory.

Eyeshields, also called safety glasses, goggles, or spectacles, not only provide protection against flying debris and chemical splashes in the lab, but may also protect against visible and near visible light or radiation from UV rays, depending on the lens material.

The most popular lens material for lab safety eyewear is polycarbonate. This material has less than half the weight of glass, making the eyewear more comfortable to wear.

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Modern eyeshield designs offer anti-slip nose bridges, anti-fog lenses, and coatings, which make them resistant to acids, caustics, and hydrocarbons. Respirators are designed to prevent contaminated air from entering the body.

laboratory symbols and meaning

The clean air can either be delivered via a supply line, or the clean air is packaged and carried with you in a tank. The face protection safety symbol lets lab personnel know that a large face shield, similar to the glass shield on a motorcycle helmet, must be worn when executing experiments that carry the potential of causing an explosion inside of the hood. A face shield can also afford extra protection against extreme temperatures.Let's hope you have common sense, since you don't know what the safety symbols mean.

You learned a few taking the quiz, right? Here's a gallery of safety symbols and their meaningsso you can brush up on the topic before heading into a lab. Ready for another quiz? See if you can tell real elements from fake ones. You knew some of the signs, but not all of them. Better brush up on those before someone let's you loose in a lab! Here's a collection of safety symbols and their meanings that you can use for review. See if you can identify types of laboratory glassware.

You did great on this quiz. If you think you're up for the challenge, try making your own chemicals. See how much science trivia you know. Share Flipboard Email. Anne Marie Helmenstine, Ph. Chemistry Expert. Helmenstine holds a Ph. She has taught science courses at the high school, college, and graduate levels.

Facebook Facebook Twitter Twitter. The skull and crossbones is a classic warning sign, but can you name the type of danger? You may not ever see this warning symbol, but if you do it would be in your best interest to know what it means. This symbol commonly is found in chemistry labs and on trucks carrying hazardous materials. What does it mean? Hint: don't store your lunch in a refrigerator which displays this sign.

It signifies:. It looks like a pretty snowflake, but that yellow background is cautionary. What hazard does this symbol indicate? It's just a big X.Why don't fictional characters say "goodbye" when they hang up a phone?

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All Rights Reserved. The material on this site can not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with prior written permission of Multiply. Hottest Questions. Previously Viewed. Unanswered Questions. Workplace Health and Safety.

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Hazardous Materials Training. What are laboratory safety symbols and their meanings? Wiki User The safety symbols used in a laboratory would depend on what kind of lab it is and what activities are pursued in the lab. There is no universal set of safety symbols suitable for all laboratories.

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Laboratory symbols are symbols you find inside a laboratory, obviously. They are used to give a warning or precaution to the users of the lab. They also aid in the systematic flow of experiments and safe contact with unfamiliar chemicals. Asked in Chemistry, Workplace Health and Safety Why do you need to know the safety symbols in the laboratory?

You need to know the safety symbols so you can understand what warnings are being given by posting them. Safety symbols indicate the presence of instructions about safety at work by the used of signboard, illuminated sign or verbal communication. Hazard alerting, safety information, mandatory action and prohibition symbol are the four types of safety symbols.

An red exclamation mark in a red triangle. A safety symbol has different meanings that depend on what material it is being displayed in. But the general meaning of it is that these symbols provide the user information on how to handle it carefully. This question refers to laboratory safety signals. Asked in Mapping and Cartography, Geography Is there a list of map symbols and their meanings?

Laboratory and Lab Safety Signs, Symbols and Their Meanings

Every map has different symbols and meanings to represent a feature. The legend at the bottom of every map has the symbols and their meanings. Asked in Science, Chemistry, Workplace Health and Safety What do the different safety symbols in the laboratory room look like? This has not helped me I'm dissapointed. T his has not helped me I'm dissapointed. Asked in Science, Chemistry What are the symbols that you can see in a laboratory? Some of the symbols that can be seen in the laboratory includes the fire symbol, the chemical symbols.Susan is a science geek, and if that wasn't enough, she gets all nerdy over technology too.

She's also a writer. Did you ever come across laboratory signs or symbols but did not know what they meant?

laboratory symbols and meaning

Or perhaps you would like to see pictures of all the various signs you would see in a laboratory and on chemicals. In this hub, I will be giving you a detailed description of each laboratory sign or symbol and a photograph so you can easily identify it.

Signs around the world may come differently, the signs in this hub are used internationally. Even if the sign is not exactly like the signs here but has the same symbols imprinted on it, then you can be sure that that is the symbol.

The author of this article claims no responsibility to any accidents that happen in the laboratory. Always consult a scientist working in a laboratory when dealing with chemicals. A laboratory is a place where dangerous events can occur, from high voltage stations to biohazards to corrosive substances. Many people are unaware of the dangers lurking in a laboratory! To alert you of hazards such as biohazards and high voltage stations, there are hazard signs placed in laboratories.

You will very commonly find hazard signs in a laboratory, alerting you to various hazards you are expected to find. However, many people may not be able to identify what these hazard symbols mean. To help you get aware of the various meanings associated with each sign, this guide has been compiled to help you do so. In this guide, there are two sections.

One section which we will deal with first, is about signs that you can be expected to find on the walls of a laboratory workplace. The second will deal with signs you can be expected to find on various chemicals and even, household substances. This symbol means that you have to wear gloves in protection from harmful chemicals or other materials. It is recommended to always wear gloves when dealing with caustic substances and other dangerous chemicals. Most hospitals and laboratories have plastic glove dispensers, so wear gloves before you enter a hospital laboratory and other chemical analysis laboratories.

To stay safe, you can wear gloves at all times in a laboratory if you wish, to protect you from chemicals.


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