Labs, X-rays,  Studies!

One of the most common requests I receive, goes like this: “Pam, can you make me an appointment to see a doctor to write me a lab order?” “Sure, I say but it is easier if we do the labs first so that you have the results at the consult. What labs do you want?” “I don’t know. Just the general lab stuff.” Well, that could be anything from a CBC to a complete thyroid profile and everything in between. Another common one: “I have pain in my shoulder. Can you make me an appointment for an MRI?” “I am happy to make the appointment but how long have you had the pain? Have you had an X-ray or ultrasound?” And of course included in most of the requests the word “cheap” or “budget” are included.

First, one does not need to see a physician here to have any studies. We can set up whatever it is that you want. That being said, are you sure of what you need? Or are you just guessing? Why spend money on something that you might not need? Or on the incorrect study? Many people request an MRI when in reality, a CT scan or an ultrasound (which is less expensive) is what is needed. Of course, if you want an MRI, we can set that up! But remember, for any radiology study, regardless of the study, the radiologist will read and interpret the study but he/she will not give treatment recommendations. That is done by a physician, or specialist, depending on the issue who will discuss with you, the patient. For lab work, that all depends on the situation. For wellness checks, for example, a PSA for a man, no need to see a physician unless the results are abnormal.

We have a very complete, economical check-up, both a Men’s and Women’s. This includes a full battery of standard lab studies, chest x-ray and abdominal ultrasound along with a follow up consult with a bilingual GP. For those looking to just do a “physical”, wellness check, this is a great way to start. Then, if there are any abnormalities the GP will take it from there with you. You can email me for information/details.

Maybe you think you might have an STD. Then of course I can send you a lab order for that. If abnormal, then it is recommended to see a physician for proper treatment. Maybe you have a history of thyroid issues and have not seen a physician for this in quite some time. Let’s do a thyroid profile and then a consult/follow up with the endocrinologist. Maybe you have a history of high cholesterol and you have been taking cholesterol meds for years, without doing a lipid profile check. We can do the lipid profile and then a follow up with GP, internist or cardiologist.

If someone has vague symptoms, is just guessing on what labs to have, then it is better to see a physician in consult, do physical review and then let the physician decide what to have.

Remember, we have state of the art facilities here with labs, radiology and diagnostic studies and we are happy to assist in any way that we can. But let’s not do it by guessing. Let’s discuss first some the important pointers above.

Rains! Heavenly rain! They are certainly missed when they do not arrive in the afternoons lately. It is an oven!

Here’s to an illuminating week!

Pamela Thompson on Email
HealthCare Resources Puerto Vallarta is a multi-faceted, independent, resource network that is here for your TOTAL health and well-being. We offer English-speaking assistance to help find a physician, hospital and/or diagnostic service for any healthcare needs. As well, we are here to answer any health-related questions that you might have in relation to the Puerto Vallarta area.