The SANITAS Medical laboratory is state-of-the-art. We have a comprehensive range of medical tests and the lastest testing technology. Our most recent adaptive purchase was for our full blood picture (Complete blood count, CBC) tests. We now have the latest Sisimex machine that analysis and gives a blood picture result in less than 5 minutes!
Our laboratory is open 24 hours a day every day. For most testing it is better to be seen by a doctor and have them request the correct tests, but for some basic tests you can walk in directly, these tests include full blood picture, urine analysis, Urine for pregnancy and of course Malaria. In most cases your results will be available in less than half an hour, depending on the queue and the amount of tests you are having done of course. Some tests, hormones for example, have a longer processing time. It is a good idea to ask the phlebotomist when they take your samples how long the results are going to be.
SOME OF OUR DIAGNOSTIC TESTS
If you would like to know more about our diagnostic services, testing and prices, please see the information below:
| Lipid Profile | Diabetic Profile | Renal Function Test | Thyroid Profile | Liver Profile | Cardiac Assessment | Tumour Markers | Urine Analysis | Stool Analysis | Malaria testing |
The Lipid profile is a group of tests that measures the levels and types of fats in our blood. Some of these fats are good and occur naturally in our blood and are necessary for some body processes. But others are damaging to our organs and all fats in excessive amounts can be dangerous to our health.
When these fats are built up in excessive amounts the blood is unable to filter them out of the body and they build up in our veins hardening the vessels and causing blockages, which can be life threatening. Controlling the level of fats in our blood is extremely important to good health.
Tests included in a Lipid profile are:
- + Total Cholesterol
- + LDL
- + HDL
- + Triglycerides
- + Full group Lipid Profile
The diabetic profile is a group of tests that measures the levels of sugar in our blood and the efficiency of our body at processing sugars, as in indicator of how well our body is producing insulin.
Insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas that works with other hormones to regulate the sugars in our blood and distribute them around our body for the processes where they are required. If insulin is not produced correctly the sugars build up in our blood and can cause life threatening complications and the development of a combination condition called Diabetes Mellitis. It is very important to control and monitor your sugar levels for sustained good health.
Tests available in the Diabetic profile are:
- + Fasting Blood Sugar
- + Random Blood Sugar
- + Glucose Tolerance Test
- + Oral Glucose Challenge Test
- + HBA1C - HGlycosylated Haemoglobin
RENAL FUNCTION TEST
The RFT tests the functioning of your kidneys. The Kidnyes are part of the excretory system, they are responsible for filtering your blood and removing any toxic or unnecessary and excessive products that build up in the blood. The kidney filters the blood and removes all of these waste products and sends it to the bladder, where it is excreted as urine.
If your kidneys are not functioning properly, there are some key proteins that will occur in the urine, and also levels of waste products that remain in the blood. These are what the RFT are measuring.
The tests in the Renal Function Test are:
- + Creatinine
- + Urea
- + Uric Acid
The Thyroid profile is a set of tests taht indicate the current functioning of your thyroid.
Your thyroid is a gland in your neck just below the adams apple. The thyroid gland produces hormones that stimulate and regulate your metabolism and controls how your body uses and distributes energy. .
TSH is produced by your pituatary glnand and is part of your body's feedback system to maintain stable amounts of the thyroid hormones T3 and T4 in the blood. When concentrations of these hormones decrease the pituatary is stimulated to release TSH. The TSH in turn stimulates the production and release of T3 and T4 by the thyroid gland. When the system is functioning normally the thyroid production of these hormones turns on and off to maintain constant blood thyroid hormone levels.
The test included in the Thyroid Profile are:
- + TSH
- + T3
- + T4
The Liver Profile is a set of tests that help determine how your liver is functioning. As with your other organs, healthy liver function is essential to your wellbeing. Damage to all or some of the liver can reduce its function or stop it completely which will make you very sick and endanger your life.
Your liver Metabolises and detoxifies drugs and harmful substances. It produces blood clotting factors, proteins and enzymes, helps maintain hormone balances and stores vitamins and minerals. Bile, is a fluid produced by the liver, it is transported through ducts direcly to the small intestine to help digest fats or to the gallbaldder to be stored and concentrated for later use. Damage to the liver can be caused by a variety of substances or excessive consumption of some substances, such as alcohol and different drugs including some herbal remedies.
The liver profile measures enzymes, proteins, and some substances that are produced or excreted by teh liver and are affected by liver injury. Some are released by damaged liver cells and some indicate a decrease in the livers ability to perform one or more of its functions. When performed togetther these tests give your doctor a snapshot of the health of your liver, they indicate the severity of any liver injury and changes in the liver function over time.
Tests included in the Liver Profile are:
- + Bilrubin
- + AST
- + ALP
- + GGT
- + Total Protein
- + Albumin:Globulin ratio
A Cardiac assessment is a group of tests where some or all may be used, in combination with other investigations like ECG or Echo, to test the current condition and functioning of your heart.
Your heart of course is a vital organ, it cannot sustain less than optimal function for very long. It is connected to many systems that are suseptible to damage from a variety of conditions. Your heart can suffer an 'attack' when some of your heart muscle is deprived of oxygen or blood supply. The most common cause for this is when blood flow to that particular ares of the heart is blocked. This may be a complete blockage from a clot or compression, or a partial blockage from gradual narrowing of the blood vessels.
There are some tests that can assess your risk of heart disease or heart attack by measuring certain proteins or hormones in the blood that increase or decrease accordingly with your risk. For example Tropinin T and I proteins are exclusively involved in heart muscle function and they increase in your blood if your heart muscle is under pressure in any way, for example from a heart attack. After a heart attack the levels stay elevated for a week or two so testing can diagnose a past heart attack even if you were not aware you had one. Other proteins and hormones can indicate similar events within a certain time frame some days, some hours. Generally you would take a cardiac assessment after consulting your Cardiologist or Physician.
Tests including in a Cardiac Assessment are:
- + CK
- + CK-MB
- + Tropinin
- + D-Dimer
- + Myoglobin
Tumour markers are different tests that measure an element that could be caused by a tumour or cancer. It is important to note that these tests are not 100% conclusive, but they can help your Physician or Oncologist decide wether further investigation is required.
Tumours, or abnormal potentially cancerous cellular growth, can affect any part of the body with a full spectrum of damage from being a totally benign (harmless) small growth that may not even need to be removed, up to a malignant (actively spreading) cancerous tumour that needs immediate treatment and likely removal. It is important that all tumours or potential tumours are investigated early, if caught early these growths can be stopped with correct care.
PSA - or Prostate Specific Antigen is a test for men, to measure the risk of prostate cancer. The prostate gland is found only in men, it encircles the urethra just below the bladder and is involved in processes that produce the fluid known as semen. The prostate gland is extremely vulnerable to abnormal cell growth, particularly after the ages of 40 to 50 years and plus. PSA is protein that is specific to the prostate and high levels can indicate abnormal cell processes in the prostate gland. A regular PSA test can help you screen out that possibility and catch it early if it does appear.
AFP - or Alpha Feta Protein is produced only in the bodies of women when they are pregnant, it is associated with embryo development. However it is also produced when liver cells are regenerating, and in some people when there is abnormal cellular activities in the ovaries or testes. If abnormal levels were found in a non-pregnant lady or a man, this would indicate damage to either of these areas and further investigation would be required.
CEA - or Carcinoembryonic Antigen is another protein involved in embryo growth, but also in cellular regeneration in adult men and women. High levels of this protein found does not mean that cancer is present, but it would mean that further tests are required to rule out cancer.
CA19-9 - Or Cancer Antigen 19.9 is another protein that can be indicative of cancer, but it is not conclusive. CA19-9 is used when conditions of the pancreas are suspected, or to decide between pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer. This antigen may also be found when there is abnormal cellular activity in the bile duct. It is not a conclusive test but can be used to rule out one or the other condition, or to check on the response of the pancrease or bile duct to treatments prescribed.
Tumour Marker tests you may use include:
- + PSA
- + CEA
- + AFP
- + CA19-9
A Urine Analysis is an extremely common request from your doctor because it can help in the diagnoses of many many different conditions. Urine is made up of all the by-products, unwanted fluids and molecules that your organs are processing and don't need. These by-products are set aside by your organs into your blood, the blood passes through your kidneys which filters them all out and sends them down into the ureter, into the bladder, through the urethra and finally out of your body as 'urine'.
One of the most obvious indications that a urine test can show is kidney function. If the kidneys are not filtering properly the urine analyisis will tell us. Also various chemicals that are released when different organs are damaged, will show in the urine analysis. For example if you have elevated sugar levels in your urine, this may indicate symptoms of diabetes. Or if bilrubin is found in your urine, this may indicate liver damage or liver disease. Or if you have blood cells in your urine, this may indicate damage to the urinary tract. So as you can see a simple urine test can be extremely helpful in diagnosing your illness.
The way the urine is analysed can also tell different things. A urine analysis consists of three examinations, visual, chemical and miscroscopic. The visual test assesses the colour and cloudiness of the urine which can indicate many different symptoms. The Chemical analysis measures at least 9 different components in the urine that can indicate damage in different organs. A miscroscopic examination of the urine can detect different cellular components like skin cells, bacteria, crystals or parasites that can also assist in diagnosis.
+ Urine Analysis
The Stool analysis is another frequently requested test from your doctor, particularly if they suspect any infection or damage to your stomach or digestive tract.
The bacteria found in stool are respresentative of the bacteria that are present in the gastrointestinal tract. The Gastrointestinal tract includes your stomach, the large intestine, the small intestine and the rectum. Certain bacteria and fungi called 'normal flora' are in everyone's gastrotract. These normal flora play an important role in the digestion of food and their presence keeps down the growth of disease causing bacteria.
Sometimes the balance of these normal flora may be affected by taking broadspectrum antibiotics, which can cause an increase in disease causing bacteria. Some of the normal flora can be affected by anti-cancer drugs or when someone has a reduced immune system, this can lead to overwhelming disease causing bacteria and symptoms such as diarrhea and abdominal pain.
Pathogenic bacteria can enter and infect teh digestive tract wehn someone eats contaminated food or water. Examples of such contaminates include raw or uncooked eggs, poultry or beef, unpasturised milk, untreated water from rivers or streams and sometimes community water supplies.
The Stool sample will be analysed similar to a urine sample, wtih a visual test for colour and consistency which can indicate some conditions, a chemical analysis for unusual component levels and a microscopic analysis for bacteria and parasites.
+ Stool Analysis
Malaria as we should all know, is extremely common here in Tanzania, but is also extremely dangerous. Whilst treatement is available and is almost 100% effective, it is important to diagnose early and minimise any of the symptoms. Malaria out of control without treatment can kill, you must seek assistance and screen for malaria whenever you or your child have such symptoms.
Symptoms of Malaria can include fever, often flu-like symptoms, chills, sweats, headaches, body malaise and body aches, sometimes nausea and vomiting, diaorrhea.
The Malaria parasite is passed to us when an infected mosquito bites. The small single celled parasites travel through our blood to the liver. In the liver they sit for a while and mature and reproduce thousands of new parasites which again infect the blood and cause the blood cells to burst. The parasites then travel back to the liver through the blood and start the process again. It is this wave of release and infection of the blood cells that causes the waves of fever and chills most common in malaria sufferers. It is important to test early, and then if symptoms persist to test again. Because of these waves of infection a test can be seemingly negative one hour and then 6-8 hours later will be positive. So it is important to test again if your symptoms continue.
There are two types of malaria tests here at the moment. One is Blood smear, where a small drop of blood is taken onto a microscope slide and examined by an experienced laboratory technician. Two is a Rapid Diagnosis Test strip where a drop of blood is dropped onto a test cartridge and the colour indication on the cartridge will say if there is malaria present or not. An RDT malaria test can give a quick diagnosis, malaria or not. A blood smear can give more information, they type of malaria and the degree of infection. Both tests may be used for more assured diagnosis, but one or the other usually is enough for diagnosis.
+ Malaria Blood Smear
+ Malaria Rapid Test