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The Practitioner 2011; 255 (1737): 34

What do you mean my results are ‘normal'?

21 Feb 2011Pais-up subscribers

'I have known patients ask after a blood test if they can be told what their blood group is, and are surprised to discover that this was not tested. Many of our patients appear to believe that a blood test will test for everything - a not unreasonable expectation in these high-tech days. What does this potential misinterpretation really mean? If a doctor performs a blood test to measure the haemoglobin level, and simply informs the patient that his or her blood test was normal, might not the patient assume that everything - including maybe even the HIV status - was normal? If so, the public health implications of blood testing are enormous...'

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