How to Cope When the Lab Emails You Scary Test Results

How to Cope When the Lab Emails You Scary Test Results

The power of the Information Age is, well, information is more and more accessible than ever before. And while in many cases this is only a positive, sometimes it can be complicated to have full information available to you at the click of the mouse. When it comes to medical information, especially specific test results that direct affect us and our health, having that information available to us without the doctor or medical professional being present can be tough to handle.

The advantage of the doctor being the one who actually presents test results, or who helps you interpret and analyze them, is exactly that; the doctor is there. He or she can immediately answer questions, clarify what the test or information actually means, and help you from wandering down emotional or mental wrong way paths that can cause serious difficulties at a time when you might very much want to not be distracted or distraught.

Some test results can be simple, like a pregnancy test. Or most test results that will show a negative for something you or your doctor wanted to test for. But when you click on a medical internet site, and it tells you that you do have a serious medical problem, that can leave you scrambling for the phone and anxiously waiting for a call back or an available appointment to find out what happens next.

Key Points:

  • 1There are downfalls and benefits to being able to access medical information through patient portals.
  • 2Patients sometimes get confused or worried by seeing results from labs they don’t understand.
  • 3Only 30%, see doctor notes on their results when accessing records.


Rather than waiting for their doctor to call, or for their next doctor’s visit, a growing number of people are using secure electronic websites to view their test results online, 24 hours a day.
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