There are some lab tests we rely on for kids that are not the typical tests you would find at your pediatrician’s office. We are not usually diagnosing acute illness like strep throat or the flu. Instead, the tests we use most often, help uncover the cause of more chronic health problems. A lot of kids have tummy problems, whether it be chronic abdominal pain, constipation, or bloating. Comprehensive stool testing is helpful in not only looking for infections like bacteria or yeast (or occasionally parasites) but it can tell us what kinds of healthy bacteria is in the gut. Many tummy issues are related to imbalances in normal gut flora or bacteria, and finding and correcting these imbalances eliminates symptoms.
At Spark Health we also use food allergy testing, which can be a blood draw or finger stick to help with digestive complaints, but also for symptoms outside of the gut like allergies, asthma, and skin rashes.
Finally, there are is urine-based, Organic Acid testing, that looks for signs of nutrient deficiencies by seeing what amounts or substances get excreted in the urine.
And we do sometimes recommend standard blood draws as well, especially to help evaluate nutrient levels. Mild iron deficiencies or omega-3 fatty acid deficiencies are not uncommon, especially during times of fast growth and can really impact mood, energy, and cognition.
As kids become teenagers the tests run start to look more like the adult blood work since they are less likely to be traumatized by a blood draw and we may want to look at additional markers such as hormones and blood sugar levels.
If you would like to learn more, give us a call at 858.228.4188 or visit us online at MySparkHealth.com .