Medical Test: Laboratory
Your GP may not consider your hair loss problem a great priority and may be reluctant to refer you for tests. It is worth paying privately to have these tests though because it gives you a way forward with treating your hair loss.
There are no laboratories who do all the tests for hair in one go. You will have to ask for a a mineral analysis for ferritin, zinc and folic acid, as well as one for Vitamin B12. Your test results will give you a figure to tell you at which level your, say, B12 levels are, together with a ‘normal reference range’. This shows you where within the normal reference range your result figure is.
The problem with ‘normal reference ranges’ is that they vary from country to country and are not definite. Also, you may be within the ‘normal reference range’ with your result but still be deficient in a particular mineral.
Vitamin and mineral analysis
The advantage of having these tests carried out by a laboratory is that you get clear figures for your mineral levels. The disadvantage is that these tests can be expensive and you still don’t know whether it is actually your diet that is incorrect, whether you lack certain nutrients or whether you need to detox from certain metals or invasive organisms to recover.
If you are having conventional laboratory tests carried out to check for toxic metals or invasive organisms, these can be unreliable. Laboratories can test for toxic metals, but they can only check how much of the metals are in your urine or in your blood. They cannot test whether there are toxic metals stored in your body tissues, and these can be considerable. The advantage of conventional laboratory testing is that you will get an approximate figure of how much of a toxic metal was found in your urine or in your blood.
Invasive organisms such as parasites are often hard to detect as they can hide in organs or body tissues so that they are not found in your stool. Conventional laboratory testing can return a result or ‘all clear’ just because your stool did not show any traces of eggs or parasites, even though you have them in your body.