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Why “Norms” in Medical Testing Cannot Be Fully Trustworthy


When interpreting test results, we always focus on the established values, or “norms”. However, often, as noted in the article on “Habré”, these figures are far from reality.

According to the author, there are a number of reasons why “norms” in analyzes cannot be trusted. Firstly, they are formed on the basis of “simple” conditionally healthy people who eat irregularly and generally do not lead the healthiest lifestyle. Sometimes such “normal” values ​​may seem strange: for example, in Russia, the “norm” of selenium in the blood is located in the zone of increased mortality.

Second, such “norms” are created on the basis of very small samples. Therefore, for the same parameter, different laboratories may have different “norms”.

What “norms” need to be established and how? As the author notes, when forming them, it is necessary to rely on the results of analyzes and studies of ideally healthy people, and not conditionally healthy people, as it is now. True, there are now very few scientific works related to such “ideally healthy” patients.

Above is a table showing the approximate values, in accordance with which you need to decipher the analyzes. As the user emphasizes, if a person leads a “reasonable lifestyle”, then his indicators should be in the green zone or outside it. Those parameters that increase with age should be near the lower border of “norms” or be less. And those characteristics that decrease over time should be included in the upper part of the range. In addition, it makes sense to focus on the performance of the child’s body, since it is not yet so much “worn”.

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