T Nation

Calling all doctors - my blood work

I was hoping to get some feedback from some of the doctors that frequent the forum concerning some blood work I just had done.

Here are the results:

Cholesterol: 158 (below 200 desirable)

Triglycerides: 65 (below 150 desirable)

HDL (good) Cholesterol: 55 (40 or greater desirable)

LDL (bad) Cholesterol: 90 (below 130 desirable)

Total Testosterone: 844ng/dL

TSH: 1.83

Testosterone % Free: 2.71 (reference range 1.0 to 2.7)

Tesosterone Free: 229

Blood Chemistries (basic metabolic)reported that my Potassium level (in the kidneys) was high: 5.5

Also, Urea Nit H (BUN) was high at 24.

Sodium: 140
Potassium H: 5.5
Chloride: 104.0
Carbon D: 30
Urea Nit H: 24.0
Creatinine: .90
Glucose: 107.0
Calcium: 9.7

I believe my increase in testosterone is due to a recent cycle of 4ADEC, as a few years ago, it was in the 600 (total T) range.

My primary doctor is concerned with my high potassium level and the high BUN levels.

Can anyone give me feedback on this?

Your high BUN is just a product of your higher than average protein intake. The potassium is only borderline high, and it’s probably from increased intake as well.

I’m suprised that your creatinine wasn’t high also, as more the more muscle mass you carry, the higher it tends to be in a disease-free state.

All in all, looks pretty good.


Thanks for the reply. I was actually wondering if it’s a result of the amount of protein I eat.

The doc thinks it’s because of the 4ADEC. She wants me to stop using it so we can retest and see if that makes a difference.

Would that have any affect on that?

Nate, from your numbers, I’m inclined to think that - oh, that’s right, I’m not a doctor…

You’re cholesterol levels seem rather low. People with under 180 have a higher all-cause death rate.


Is this Dr. Neil now?


No, but it doesn’t change the facts. Yes, people with cholesterol under 180 have SLIGHTLY lower instances of heart disease. But the problem is their all-cause death rate is higher, i.e. they die more from cancer, strokes, etc.

Some people have naturally low cholesterol, though. So I’m sure it doesn’t apply to everyone. It’s just a stat.


so then why is below 200 desirable, according to Nate Dogg.


Probably because the doctors said so.

So let me get this straight NeilG. The doc wants it below 200 so I don’t die of heart disease. You want it above 180 so I don’t die of cancer or something else. Uh huh… The highest mine has been in the last three years is 132. I guess I’ve got to die of something? Statistics can be made to say almost anything.

HMMM, that’s right the doctors who have an advanced degree, gone through residency, and done a few fellowships said so. I’d listen to them over some 18 year old kid who completely contradicts what they say.

JWright…you forgot about those doctors who did their MD/PhD before the rest of the things you listed. Stupid morons! :slight_smile:


Did you miss when I said this?

“Some people have naturally low cholesterol, though. So I’m sure it doesn’t apply to everyone. It’s just a stat.”

Nate Diggity - The BUN:Creatinine ratio is normally less than 20:1, but it can increase with dehydration or high protein intake (amino acids = nitrogenous, BUN = blood urea nitrogen). Wouldn’t sweat it at all. As far as the K goes, you can have elevated levels with dehydration, or concurrently with high lactic acid (post-exercise), but I wouldn’t worry about it. Getting your blood redrawn wouldn’t be a bad idea though, especially since with some labs, you can give them three vials of the same blood and they’ll come back with three different results.

I would be slightly concerned about the elevated K+. However, I wouldn’t be alarmed. I just think it’s important to find out why it’s high. The reason being that elevated K+ is often an indication of cardiac arrythmia’s and associated problems. If K+ is being leeched from your cells, excitatory cells (ie. neurons, contractile cells such as skeletal and cardiac myocytes, etc.) will not be able to properly regulate their electrical activity (or action potentials (APs)). As you might imagine, this would lead to things like overlapping APs, which means that contractions are not fully released, before the next one begins. This leads to a whole host of other problems esp. in cardiac myocytes.

Now before you go panicing thinking your hearts going to stop, understand that I’m saying this occurs if K+ is being leeched from the cells. If you’re intaking very high levels of K+ and this is just excess, or if your having difficulty osmoregulating, this is likely less of a concern.

Nate - Before you start having palpitations and check into the local ER, I’d like to point out a few things that may ease your mind. While it’s true that hyperkalemia can cause arrhythmia, a level of 5.5 is most likely not going to make you drop dead unless your baseline level is in the low 3’s and you just got an IV bolus of K. What’s normal for the average person may not be normal for everyone, especially athletes. I thought I read this before, but I wasn’t sure so I looked it up. It’s normal to have an increased K level following exercise. After walking, up to .4 mEq/L, up to 1.2 after moderate exertion, and up to 2 following exercise to exhaustion. These transient increases quickly return to normal, but if you worked out and went to your doc, that may have contributed. Also, a common occurence with blood draws is the physical trauma to your red cells during venipuncture, which causes them to release K into the serum sample, resulting in a pseudohyperkalemia. There are other sources of lab error, but it would be a good idea to get it checked again. If your levels are elevated again, your doc will take the appropriate measures to seek an underlying cause. I wouldn’t worry about kidney dysfunction since your creatinine level is ok, especially since you lift weights and may be expected to have a higher than normal Cr level. Hope this info helps your state of mind in the mean time.

PS - Still waiting on those pics…haha just playing bro

ND and ScrubMD, thanks for the replies! That definitely helped! Now I understand more of what she was saying (and yes, she did mention the heart stuff).

The blood was drawn on an empty stomach in the morning, so exercise was done the night before. I would think it’s all due to my protein consumption, but she wants me to stop the 4ADEC to see if that could be a cause. So I’ll go back for lab work in a few weeks and see if anything changes.

Thanks again! Great info!

p.s. The areas that I mentioned the “desirable” levels is based on what the medical profession has established as desirable and noted on my bloodwork.

I’ve got a side question with this nate, how much did it cost for you to have done?

I only paid my co-payment ($15) for the doctor’s visit. All lab work is included with my appointments. My co-payment was $10 in previous years, but insurance keeps getting more expensive, so we had to select a different version of our HMO that changed co-payment plans. Still, for $15, it’s worth it!

Nate you don’t look that old, surprised your insurance would cover you for that sort of visit.

I’ve tried MANY MANY times to get anything done in terms of testing and they won’t do it, and the doctors won’t even try to push it through insurance since I have a clean family history.

Seems that with a good history and in good health, a male can’t get any routine testing done (under insurance) until he is like 35.

I actually gave up trying, and I stopped paying for insurance since it was too expensive (self employed). I never go to regular doctors anyway, hadn’t been to one since my last covered checkup around 18 years old.