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We’ve heard it ever since COVID-19 came on the scene. People with underlying conditions who contract the virus are at higher risk of developing more severe cases of COVID-19 cases that can seriously impact their lives. According to surveillance data from the Centers for Disease Control, hospitalizations have been six times higher and deaths 12 times higher among those with reported underlying conditions compared to those with no reported preexisting conditions. There are more than 26 different underlying conditions included on the Centers for Disease Control’s COVID-19 warning list. However, three underlying conditions are known to show a strong connection to COVID-19’s worst outcomes. According to a study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association, nearly two-thirds of people hospitalized with COVID-19 were attributable to hypertension, diabetes, and heart disease. In other words, these hospitalizations might not have occurred if these conditions had not been present.

Let’s take a closer look at a few common underlying conditions and learn how Any Lab Test Now® can help you Take Control of Your Health™.


COVID-19 has been linked directly to multiple heart-related issues. According to the American Heart Association, it has contributed indirectly to deaths among people who had cardiac problems but delayed getting treatment.

Conditions include: 

  • Heart failure – a condition in which the heart does not pump blood effectively
  • Coronary artery disease – which leads to blocked arteries
  • Cardiomyopathy – a weakening, thinning, and/or thickening of the heart muscle

These conditions can lead to more severe cases of COVID-19. One of the main concerns for people with underlying heart conditions is that the virus could cause respiratory stress that would worsen those conditions. The best solution is to continue taking usual medications and frequent observation. Our Heart Health Panel includes four tests to monitor your cardiac status. This panel can be used to gain a baseline assessment of your heart health or as a monitoring tool to reveal possible risk factors.


Blood pressure is the pressure that comes from the blood pushing against the walls of the arteries. If blood pressure remains high for a long time, it can damage the heart and cause other health problems, including heart attack and stroke. People with hypertension or high blood pressure have a decreased immune response, putting them at higher risk of severe complications related to COVID-19.

Nearly half of adults in the United States have hypertension and are prescribed medication to treat it. However, reports from the CDC show that only about one in four adults with hypertension have their condition under control.

Uncontrolled hypertension has been found to:

  • Lower your immunity: High blood pressure suppresses the immune system, increasing the risk of contracting an infectious disease like COVID-19
  • Increase the risk of lung injury: Uncontrolled high blood pressure has also been found to increase the severity of lung injury and mortality in those afflicted with COVID-19.

Taking medications as prescribed and using a blood pressure monitor to track levels are keys to living a heart-healthy life.

Experts suggest the following protocols to prevent or reduce hypertension:

  • Exercise
  • Eat heart-healthy foods like colorful vegetables and whole grains
  • Lose weight
  • Manage stress
  • Avoid alcohol
  • Quit smoking

Laboratory testing does not diagnose hypertension, but routine lab tests like a Urinalysis or Comprehensive Metabolic Panel are recommended before beginning treatment of high blood pressure to detect conditions that may cause and/or make high blood pressure worse and to evaluate and monitor organ function over time. 


One in every 10 Americans across all ages — that’s more than 34 million people — are dealing with this metabolic disorder. It’s estimated that people with diabetes are more likely to have worse complications and severe symptoms when infected with the virus, apparent in individuals with both type 2 and type 1 diabetes. 

Types of Diabetes:

  • Type 1 diabetes is a disorder in which the pancreas stops working, and most of the insulin-producing cells in the body are destroyed by an immune process. Type 1 typically develops in childhood. 
  • Type 2 shows up later in life. Type 2 diabetics don’t respond to insulin as well as they should. Lifestyle factors, including being overweight and inactivity, may play a role in the disease.

Viral infections such as COVID-19 can increase inflammation, or internal swelling, in people with diabetes. Inflammation can also be caused by above-target blood sugars and could contribute to more severe complications such as diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA), a condition that can be experienced by people with type 1 diabetes. DKA can make it challenging to manage fluid intake and electrolyte levels — which is vital in managing sepsis. Sepsis and septic shock are some of the more severe complications that some people with COVID-19 have experienced.

Your risk of getting very sick from COVID-19 is likely to be lower if your diabetes is well-managed. Many diabetics use Any Lab Test Now to help them effectively control their condition. The Diabetes Maintenance Panel provides diabetics with a lot of important information about their condition. 

  • Complete Blood Count (CBC) – Tests for blood disorders such as infection or anemia.  
  • Hemoglobin A1C – This is a key test for diabetics. It measures the average blood sugar levels over the past three months.
  • Diabetic Urinalysis – Determines if albumin (protein) is in the blood, which would indicate a problem with the kidneys.


Adherence to social distancing protocols can help lower the risk of catching the coronavirus. These include:

  • Limiting the number of people you come into contact with
  • Wearing a mask, especially around people
  • Washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
  • Wiping surfaces with sanitation wipes
  • Using hand sanitizer 


Any Lab Test Now wants you to be at ease when it comes to seeking out any type of lab work. We provide you a safe and clean alternative location for lab work. Each of our 190+ stores is sanitized several times a day, in accordance with the CDC’s protocols. Any Lab Test Now is a committed partner in helping you manage your family’s healthcare so you can make educated decisions that will directly affect your quality of life. We want to put you at ease during the coronavirus outbreak. We are here to help. 

Find your closest Any Lab Test Now store at www.anylabtestnow.com.

Three Health Conditions That Affect Men, Too

There are many health conditions and diseases that are exclusive to women. Think about it. Men will never face ovarian or cervical cancers. Putting the differences in anatomy aside, genes and hormones also contribute to the reason why some health conditions attack women more often than men. However, there are some medical disorders typically associated with women that CAN affect men!

To observe Men’s Health Month, we’re focusing on three health conditions that affect women more, but men can be at risk as well.


Every year, more Americans learn they are suffering from osteoporosis, a disease that reduces the density of bone, causing them to weaken and be more vulnerable to fractures. Although women are at greater risk, men get osteoporosis too.

One in three women are at risk, but so are one in five men. While women experience rapid bone loss following menopause, by 65 to 70 years old, men lose bone mass at about the same rate. Other fast facts about men and osteoporosis include:

  • One in four men over the age of 50 will break a bone due to osteoporosis.
  • Each year, about 800,000 men will break a hip.
  • Men are more likely than women to die within a year after breaking a hip.

Interestingly, many of the same factors that put women at risk for osteoporosis apply to men too. A family history, drinking too much alcohol, smoking, not exercising, or a hormone imbalance can increase a man’s chances of developing osteoporosis.

Osteoporosis is considered a silent disease because there are no symptoms. However, there are several signs to watch out for:

  • Change in posture – including bending forward or stopping
  • Loss of height – getting shorter by an inch or more
  • Shortness of breath – caused by a decrease in lung capacity due to compressed disks.
  • Bone fractures
  • Pain in the lower back

Any Lab Test Now® can help evaluate a man’s risk of developing osteoporosis with a simple blood test. The Osteoporosis Risk Panel includes 10 different tests to determine one’s risk for this debilitating disease. The outcome of this test will give a better evaluation of bone health and how the body processes the minerals needed to create bone.


This condition is more common in women; however, plenty of men get it too. Hypothyroidism points to an underactive thyroid gland. The thyroid gland is shaped like a bow tie and sits just below the skin in the front of the neck. It acts like your body’s energy company, pumping the thyroid hormone out into the blood and ultimately to all the organs in the body. When the thyroid is not working up to its capacity, the result takes a toll on a person’s metabolism and can affect any of the organs.

The symptoms of hypothyroidism in men are about the same as in women. The most common symptoms include:

Men may also experience a loss of interest in sex or trouble achieving an erection.

If a man has any of these symptoms, they should consider getting a screen. Any Lab Test Now offers the most reliable form of testing for determining hypothyroidism. The Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) test checks the body’s production of TSH and helps look for hypothyroidism. If the results point to hypothyroidism, a follow-up with a physician is recommended to begin the necessary treatment, which generally requires a thyroid hormone replacement medication.

Bladder or Urinary Tract Infections (UTI)

Infections of the bladder, or UTIs, primarily occur in women. However, men are not immune. UTIs occur when bacteria build up somewhere in the urinary tract. The incidences of UTIs in men increase with age. As a result, men with an enlarged prostate, kidney stones, or an abnormal narrowing of the urethra are particularly susceptible to a bladder infection.

Men need to be aware of the symptoms and how to determine whether they have an infection.

The most common symptoms of a bladder infection include:

  • Frequent urination
  • Cloudy urine or bloody urine
  • Strong urge to urinate
  • Burning or tingling sensation during urination
  • Low-grade fever

The test for a UTI involves a urine culture, which looks for the presence of a single type of bacteria. This test is offered at Any Lab Test Now. If you do in fact have a bladder infection, your primary physician may recommend treatment that involves antibiotics, which are typically very effective.

Do Not Skip Health Screenings

Studies show that men are less likely than women to look after their health. They are 25 percent less likely to have visited their doctor in the past year and almost 40 percent more likely to have skipped recommended health screenings. Whether a screening is needed for any of the conditions listed above; or any number of other health concerns, Any Lab Test Now offers men an alternative and easy solution to help take control of their health. For an overall picture of your health, our Comprehensive Male Panel is also highly recommended. During Men’s Health Month, find how you’re doing in terms of cholesterol, testosterone, prostate health, and more.

Just like all the tests at Any Lab Test Now, a doctor’s order is not necessary. Walk-ins for same-day testing are always welcome. Test results come back quickly and confidentially so treatment can begin as soon as possible, if needed.

Be at Ease

Any Lab Test Now wants you to be at ease when it comes to seeking out any type of lab work.

We provide you a safe and clean alternative location for lab work. Each of our 190+ stores is sanitized several times a day, in accordance with the CDC’s protocols. Any Lab Test Now is a committed partner in helping you manage your family’s healthcare so you can make educated decisions that will directly affect your quality of life. We want to put you at ease during the coronavirus pandemic. We are here to help.

Find your closest Any Lab Test Now store at www.anylabtestnow.com.

Women’s Health Month: Chronic Conditions You May Not Know Affect You

Did you know May is Women’s Health Month?

There are many conditions known to impact women, such as breast or ovarian cancer. However, there are several diseases that the general public identifies with men. Heart disease and colorectal cancer are two examples. The thinking that these are male diseases can unfortunately put women at a disadvantage when it comes to their health.

During the month of May, it is time for women to make their own health a priority and learn more about these chronic conditions that can impact them just as much as men. Early screenings can identify potential problems long before signs and symptoms show up.

Here is an overview on these two conditions and the simple tests that will help women get a handle on their health.

Heart Disease

COVID-19 aside, heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States, accounting for one in every four deaths. Doctors have known for years that men and women experience heart disease somewhat differently.

Women are more likely to die following a heart attack than men are. Men present more “typical” symptoms of a heart attack, including chest, jaw, or arm pain; pain that radiates to one of the arms, neck, jaw, or back; and nausea, vomiting, sweating, or palpitations.

However, women are more likely to have “atypical” signs of heart attack, including heartburn, back pain, or pain that is burning, stabbing, or resembles indigestion.

Because of this, women are more likely than men to experience delays in emergency care.

It is important for women to get a baseline assessment of their heart health.

Any Lab Test Now® offers several tests that can provide an overview of heart health — including the Heart Health Panel, which looks at the following:

  • Lipoprotein Particle Protein Basic (LPP) – Overall cardiovascular risk assessment.
  • Complete Metabolic Panel (CMP) – Evaluates the body’s electrolyte balance and the status of major body organs.
  • C-Reactive Protein (CRP) High Sensitivity – An inflammation marker used to evaluate the risk of cardiovascular disease.
  • Homocysteine – Evaluates the risk of coronary heart disease, atherosclerosis, and other cardiovascular diseases.

Once you have results, you can better understand your heart health and take steps with the help of your primary care physician and potentially a cardiologist.

Colorectal Cancer 

According to the American Cancer Society, colon cancer is the third most common type of cancer diagnosed in men and women in the U.S. Women have a 1 in 25 chance of developing colorectal cancer.

Thanks to screenings, like those offered at Any Lab Test Now, the rate of people dying of colon or rectal cancer has been dropping. Those who can identify colorectal cancer sooner can reduce the risk of cancer cells spreading to different areas of the body and can increase their chance of recovery.

Symptoms of colorectal cancer include bleeding from the rectum, abdominal discomfort, blood in the stool, dark or black stools, or any change in bowel habits, unexplained weight loss, and weakness or fatigue.

Some risk factors of colorectal cancer include:

  • Are over 45 years of age
  • Had colorectal polyps or cancer in the past
  • Have a family history of colorectal cancer (in a parent, brother, sister, or child)
  • Have ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease
  • Eat a diet high in fat and [low in calcium, fiber, and folate]
  • Smoke cigarettes
  • Have certain genetic conditions

The Colon Cancer Screening Test at Any Lab Test Now is a health-monitoring test kit that detects hemoglobin, or blood, in the stool. The sample is collected in the privacy of your home and only requires a small water-based sampling from one bowel movement. Test kits can either be picked up in-store or purchased online and shipped.

If your test is positive, you will want to share your test results with your primary care physician or a gastroenterologist.

What if you are a woman who’s not necessarily concerned about heart disease or colon cancer? That’s great, but you could still benefit from a baseline assessment of your overall health. Our Annual Check-Up Panel consists of five tests that are typically ordered by a physician during an annual physical exam. It’ll provide you with numeric results or levels regarding your blood counts, kidney and liver functions, electrolytes, total cholesterol, triglycerides, HDL, LDL, and thyroid function values. By knowing your levels, you can begin to manage and even improve your health and keep track of fluctuations over time.

Be at Ease

At Any Lab Test Now, we understand that people may have concerns about going to a healthcare facility during the coronavirus outbreak. You can be at ease knowing that we are providing you a safe and clean location for your lab work. Each of our 190+ stores is sanitized several times a day, in accordance with the CDC’s protocols. When you get your test results, you can easily make a telemedicine appointment with your physician and share the details. Any Lab Test Now is a committed partner in helping you to make educated healthcare decisions that can benefit your quality of life.

Find your closest Any Lab Test Now store at www.anylabtestnow.com.


The Vitamin a Day That Could Keep COVID Away

As people search for ways to protect themselves from the coronavirus, there is growing evidence that vitamin D could help protect you against COVID-19.

Research shows immune-boosting vitamin D may play a role in preventing acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), a common cause of death among COVID-19 patients.

Before you run out to the nearest pharmacy or nutrition store to stock up on supplements, there are some things to consider .

What is vitamin D?

Vitamin D is essential for maintaining healthy bones and teeth. It also plays an important role in helping immune systems function. Low levels of vitamin D can lead to autoimmune problems — when the immune system attacks healthy cells — and increase the chance of infection.

It is called the “sunshine vitamin” because the primary and most accessible source of vitamin D is the sun. Ultraviolet rays from the sun trigger vitamin D synthesis.

Symptoms of vitamin D deficiency include frequent illness or infection, slow wound healing, fatigue, bone and back pain, hair loss, muscle pain, and depression.

An estimated 40 percent of adults in the United States may be deficient in vitamin D. Age and genetic background can play a part in how much vitamin D is present in your body.

Seventy-nine percent of African Americans are vitamin D deficient — nearly double the national average. The reason? People with darker skin pigmentation tend to have more melanin, which reduces the body’s ability to produce vitamin D. We also become deficient as we age. Our thinning skin is less efficient at absorbing vitamin D.

Vitamin D and COVID-19

Vitamin D deficiencies have long been associated with an increase in respiratory infections like pneumonia, tuberculosis, and bronchitis.

Now a new study highlights the vital role of vitamin D in fighting off respiratory infection, including COVID-19. They stress that a deficiency in vitamin D can be a factor in one’s deteriorating condition, should they contract COVID-19.

The study claims to find evidence that vitamin D prevents respiratory infections, especially in older adults whose vitamin D levels are low. Although its specific role in coronavirus infections is still unknown, researchers vouch for its effectiveness in boosting the immune system.

The study also displayed that patients with vitamin D deficiency and those not receiving the correct dose encountered the most benefit from supplementation.

This could be beneficial information to many people, including African-American adults who are generally at greater risk for a number of chronic and potentially life-shortening conditions such as hypertension, stroke, insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes, cancer, heart disease, and all-cause mortality, some of which is associated with vitamin D deficiency.

How can you boost your vitamin D intake?

The first and best way to boost your vitamin D is to get outside in the sun. Research shows the best time to get vitamin D from sunlight is between 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. in the spring, summer, and fall. Vitamin D produced in the skin may last at least twice as long in the blood — compared with other forms of supplementation.

You can also build up your vitamin D levels through certain foods. The National Institute of Health recommends eating foods naturally rich in vitamin D, including egg yolks and fatty fish, like salmon, tuna, and mackerel, as well as beef liver and cheese.

Vitamin D is also added to milk and some breakfast cereals, orange juice, yogurt, margarine, and soy beverages. It is best to check the labels to confirm.

Of course, you can also take vitamin D supplements. It comes in two forms: vitamin D2 and vitamin D3. Vitamin D2 comes from plant sources and fortified foods, while vitamin D3 comes from animal sources. The recommended daily dose for adults aged 19–70 is 15 mcg (600 IU), according to the National Institutes of Health.

It is important to take the recommended daily allowance because it is possible to overdose on vitamin D.

Get Tested

The only way to know if your level of vitamin D is low is to get tested. Vitamin D testing is offered at Any Lab Test Now®. No fasting is required, and you do not need a doctor’s order to get the test done. Test results generally take between 24 to 72 business hours after your specimen is collected.

Click here to learn more about Any Lab Test Now’s Vitamin D Testing.

Be at Ease

At Any Lab Test Now, we are very mindful about people’s fears about going to a healthcare facility and possibly encountering a coronavirus patient. You can be at ease at Any Lab Test Now that we are providing you a safe and clean alternative location for lab work. Each of our 190+ stores is sanitized several times a day, in accordance with the CDC’s protocols. When you get your test results, you can easily make a telemedicine appointment with your physician and share the details. Any Lab Test Now is a committed partner in helping you manage your healthcare so you can make educated decisions that will directly affect your quality of life. We want to put you at ease during the coronavirus outbreak. We are here to help.

Find your closest Any Lab Test Now store at www.anylabtestnow.com.

Is Your Liver Health in Trouble?

How to Find Out if Your Liver is Healthy

More Americans have been turning to alcohol to get them through their coronavirus concerns. Studies show a massive spike in alcohol consumption. But all those cheers are cause for fears when it comes to our health. Doctors are fighting back with some sobering commentary of their own.

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, every year, around 88,000 people in the United States die from alcohol-related causes. This makes it the third leading preventable cause of death.

Excessive alcohol consumption can lead to or exacerbate mental health disorders, such as anxiety and depression.

It can also have a long-term impact on our physical health by weakening our immune system. This makes us more susceptible to infectious diseases such as COVID-19, increases our risk of several types of cancer, and damages vital organs such as our liver, heart, and pancreas.

The liver is especially susceptible to alcohol-related damage. The liver acts like a filter to break down and protect our bodies from harmful substances in the blood. It produces proteins, enzymes, and hormones, which the body uses to ward off infections. It converts vitamins, nutrients, and medicines into substances our bodies can use. It is responsible for cleaning our blood, producing bile for digestion, and storing glycogen for energy.

When alcohol is introduced into our system, the liver starts working overtime. The liver can only oxidize about one drink per hour. Even then, the liver only processes 90 percent of the consumed alcohol. The rest gets expelled through urine, sweat, and breathing. When someone has too much to drink, the liver can’t keep up. The unprocessed alcohol circulates into the bloodstream and starts impacting the brain, which is how people become intoxicated.

Continued and chronic alcohol abuse starts to destroy the liver and can lead to several conditions, including cirrhosis of the liver, alcoholic hepatitis, or even liver cancer.

Common Symptoms of Liver Trouble

  • Yellowish skin and eyes (jaundice)
  • Abdominal pain and swelling
  • Swelling in legs and ankles
  • Dark urine
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Itchy skin
  • Discolored stool
  • Bruising easily
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Fever
  • Disorientation
  • Weakness
  • Loss of appetite
  • Pale, bloody, or tar-colored stool

Determine Your Liver Health

One of the first steps in detecting liver damage is with a simple blood test to determine the level of certain enzymes in the blood. Any Lab Test Now offers the Hepatic Function Panel, which allows you an easy way to find out how well your liver is working.

The liver panel consists of seven tests in one that measure the following:

  • Total protein (TP) – Measures the total amount of two classes of proteins in the blood — albumin and globulin.
  • Albumin – Measures the main protein made by the liver; the level can be affected by liver and kidney function and by decreased production or increased loss.
  • Bilirubin – This brownish-yellow substance is found in bile. It is produced when the liver breaks down old red blood cells. When the liver is damaged by a high intake of alcohol, it swells — blocking the removal of the bilirubin.
  • Alkaline phosphatase (ALP) – This enzyme is found in many tissues, with the highest concentrations in the liver, biliary tract, and bones. The ALP test may be performed to assess liver functioning and to detect liver lesions that may cause biliary obstruction, such as tumors or abscesses.
  • Aspartate aminotransferase (AST) – This test measures the level of aspartate transaminase (an enzyme that is found in the liver, kidneys, pancreas, heart, skeletal muscle, and red blood cells) that is released into the bloodstream after liver or heart problems.
  • Alanine aminotransferase (ALT) – This test measures the level of alanine aminotransferase (an enzyme found predominantly in the liver) that is released into the bloodstream after acute liver cell damage. This test may be performed to assess liver function, and/or to evaluate treatment of acute liver disease, such as hepatitis.

Be at Ease

Any Lab Test Now wants you to be at ease when it comes to seeking out any type of lab work, including the Hepatic Function panel to determine your liver health.

We provide you a safe and clean alternative location for lab work. Each of our 185+ stores are sanitized several times a day, in accordance with the CDC’s protocols. Any Lab Test Now is a committed partner in helping you manage your family’s healthcare so you can make educated decisions that will directly affect your quality of life. We want to put you at ease during the coronavirus outbreak. We are here to help.

Find your closest Any Lab Test Now store at www.anylabtestnow.com.