Most people come to the clinic with a number of diagnostic tests already performed. These will be reviewed. Depending upon a persons presenting problem a variety of testing will be suggested.
First what I call the foundation nutrients will be assessed by simple blood biochemistry analysis. Many of these tests can be performed in local laboratories. Some of these tests are OHIP covered, some are not. Repletion programs for deficiencies or low levels of these nutrients will be prescribed.
The endocrine system is an important regulating system in the body. Thyroid, Adrenal and Sex hormones will be assessed. These systems can be optimized by giving the body the nutrients that are required for the formation of these all important hormones. Sometimes hormone replacement may be needed.
The following tests are not OHIP covered and need to be sent to specialized laboratories.
Some individuals will benefit from an intracellular nutrient analysis. This testing is unique in that it tests for an individual’s cellular need for nutrients and not just the absolute level. The test involves sending a sample of blood in specialized preservative. Upon receiving the samples the individual’s white blood cells are isolated and grown in tissue culture at the specialized laboratory in Houston, Texas. These cells are then grown in different media where one critical nutrient is missing and the cells growth and DNA synthesis is measured. If the cells are able to grow without that particular nutrient then that individual’s biochemical systems are able to function without it. Whenever the cells growth and DNA synthesis is impaired due to the lack of a particular nutrient, it is then known that that nutrient is required by the individual’s biochemical system. Spectracell analysis, as this test is called, tests for the critical B vitamins (thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, pyridoxine, cyanocobalamin, folic acid and biotin), the minerals zinc, calcium and magnesium, the amino acids and metabolites serine, glutamine, asparagine, choline, inositol, carnitine, and oleic acid and vitamin D and the antioxidants glutathione, cysteine, selenium, vitamin E, alpha lipoic acid and coenzyme Q10. The difference between this testing and usual plasma levels testing is similar to the difference between testing for heart function using an ECG as opposed to an exercise stress test. Link: www.spectracell.com
The presence of toxic metals in a persons body is most easily screened for by using a simple hair analysis which tests for lead, mercury, cadmium, silver, arsenic, barium and aluminum and gives a good estimate of the toxic load that exists in a person’s body. These toxic metals can be further tested by white blood cell levels or by giving an oral chelating agent such as DMSA and having the person collect their urine for 24 hours after which it is tested for levels of lead or mercury or other toxic metal which may have been found to be higher that acceptable.
Digestive disturbances can be caused by an imbalance in the intestinal ecology. The intestinal tract is home to hundreds of bacterial species which help to break down food, maintain pH levels and inhibit the growth of other more pathogenic bacteria. For a variety of reasons these beneficial bacteria may be missing or there may be an imbalance in the types of bacteria contributing to digestive problems. An analysis of the stool for types and quantities of bacterial species, presence of parasites and/or eggs and characteristics of digested food particles and pH may help in the treatment and restoration of intestinal ecology. Links: www.greatplainslaboratory.com www.doctorsdata.com
The presence of various infectious agents may be a contributing factor in certain auto immune diseases or fatigue related syndromes. The presence of Candida has become a concern, as well as Chlamydia, Mycoplasma, Ureaplasm and the cell wall deficient bacteria or nanobacteria. These as well as various viruses (HHV6) can be detected by Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) detection systems. This testing is accessed through a number of laboratories which specialize in this type of testing.
Food Allergy testing is discussed in a separate location under services.
This represents the most common testing which may be brought to bear depending upon an individual’s presenting problem and their interest in obtaining further information and insight into their body’s workings.
This discussion is a representation of the types of testing which may be recommended for consideration when traditional medical laboratory testing has not been completely helpful in elucidating particularly complex clinical conditions. These additional tests should be considered as providing information which may be helpful in elucidating underlying disease processes and are not to be taken as replacements for traditional medical testing/care.