Diagnostic Care

Diagnostic care involves diagnosing and treating problems in the body. Additionally, our diagnostic care services monitor existing problems and follow up on abnormal test results. Below are the diagnostic care tests and labs that Primary Care Partners of South Bend offers.

Diagnostic Care Tests

X-Ray

An x-ray is a painless procedure used to examine many parts of the body. The machine takes pictures of your bones by using a type of radiation called electromagnetic waves. You may require an x-ray if your doctor thinks you could have a broken or fractured bone. Additionally, X-rays are used to detect pneumonia or even breast cancer. There are no specific ways to prepare for an x-ray. Importantly, let us know if you are pregnant or think you could be pregnant so we can take the necessary precautions. During an X-Ray, you will sit or lay on an exam table, depending on which part of your body they are taking x-rays. Then, your doctor will take photos of the inside of your body, and examine the results with you.

EKG

An EKG, or electrocardiogram, is a test that checks for signs of heart disease. This test is quick and painless. EKGs can diagnose a heart attack, check heart rhythm, monitor blood flow to the heart, and more. There is no significant preparation for an EKG. Sometimes we request that patients shave certain areas of the body where the electrodes attach. During your EKG, your doctor attaches up to twelve electrodes to your chest, arms, and legs. Then, the electrodes attach to wires, which record your heart’s electrical activity. The entire process takes approximately ten minutes. Some symptoms of heart conditions include chest pain, trouble breathing, pounding or fluttering in your heart, and exhaustion. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, give us a call at (574) 251-1200 to schedule an EKG appointment.

Spirometry

A spirometry test measures how well your lungs are working. This test will measure how quickly and how much air you inhale and exhale. We may may request that you come in for a spirometry test if you often experience difficulty breathing. We ask patients not to smoke, drink alcohol, or eat large meals on the day of their test. Also, your doctor may ask you to avoid certain medications before the test. The spirometry test takes approximately fifteen minutes. Your doctor will place a clip on your nose to only allow breathing through your mouth. Then, you will repeatedly deeply inhale and exhale. If you are having trouble breathing, contact our diagnostic care team online or at (574) 251-1200 to see if a spirometry test is right for you.

Diagnostic Care Labs

Urinalysis

A urinalysis is a urine test used to diagnose urinary tract infections, kidney disease, and diabetes. During your diagnostic care appointment, we may suggest a urinalysis if we suspect you have one of these disorders. Before a urinalysis, make sure to drink plenty of water to give an adequate urine sample. Additionally, we may ask you to temporarily stop using certain medications that could affect your results. There are three ways to test urine in a urinalysis.

Visual

The lab technician will look at the urine. If it is clear, that is a sign of good health. However, if the urine is cloudy, that may indicate an infection.

Dipstick test

A dipstick is a plastic stick with chemicals on it. The doctor dips it into the urine to look for abnormalities. Then, the chemical strips will change color depending on the contents of the urine.

Microscopic exam

Lastly, doctors can examine drops of urine under a microscope to look for infections or bacteria. Depending on your test results, we may schedule a follow-up appointment for further testing. If you are experiencing bladder irritation or burning, give us a call at (574) 251-1200 or contact us online to schedule an appointment.

Occult Blood Testing for Colon Cancer Screening

This diagnostic care lab test is used to check stool samples for hidden blood. This hidden, or occult blood in the stool can be a symptom of colon cancer. If the test does detect blood, we may require additional testing. We suggest that you avoid fruits and vegetables, red meat, vitamin C supplements, iron supplements, and pain relievers before the test. Patients can do occult blood testing in their own homes. Primary Care Partners of South Bend will provide you with all of the necessary tools to complete the test. At home, you will need to collect samples from three separate bowel movements. If your results are positive for occult blood, there is bleeding in the digestive tract and further testing may be necessary.

Hemoglobin

A hemoglobin test measures the amount of hemoglobin in your blood. This protein is found in your red blood cells and carries oxygen from your lungs to your body. Abnormal hemoglobin levels may indicate a blood disorder.

Low hemoglobin levels

If the hemoglobin test reveals low levels of hemoglobin, your body has a low red blood cell count, also called anemia. Anemia can cause vitamin deficiencies, bleeding, or chronic diseases.

High hemoglobin levels

Test results of high hemoglobin levels could be the result of smoking, dehydration, lung disease, or polycythemia vera. Polycythemia vera is a blood disorder that causes bone marrow to make too many red blood cells. Your doctor at Primary Care Partners of South Bend will take a sample of blood from a finger prick or through a needle in your arm vein. Then, your blood sample will be sent to a lab for testing.

Diagnostic Care for Acute Infection

An acute infection refers to the rapid onset of a disease that lives in the body for a short period of time. Each acute infection has different symptoms and different methods of treatment. Our diagnostic care team is equipped with the necessary knowledge and resources to treat a wide array of infections. Some common acute infections are mono, RSV, flu, COVID-19, and strep throat.

Mono

Infectious mononucleosis, or mono, is a virus transmitted through saliva. Generally, it is found in teens and young adults. Some common symptoms of mono are sore throat, fatigue, fever, swollen tonsils, swollen lymph nodes, and headaches. There are no antibiotics to treat mono. At Primary Care Partners of South Bend, we recommend plenty of rest for at least two weeks to allow your body to heal.

RSV

Respiratory Syncytial Virus is a common virus that infects the respiratory tract of children. In most cases, RSV leads to the common cold and passes quickly. In some instances, it can lead to pneumonia or bronchiolitis. Symptoms of RSV include a cough, runny nose, dehydration, trouble breathing, or wheezing when your child coughs. In most cases, parents can treat their children at home. Treatments include plenty of fluids throughout the day and fever-reducers like acetaminophen. Additionally, a bulb syringe and saline drops can remove excess nasal fluid.

Flu

The flu is a respiratory illness that affects the nose, throat, and lungs. This differs from the common cold because of its sudden onset. Symptoms of the flu include fever, sore throat, cough, headache, loss of appetite, and body aches. Patients with the flu can use antiviral drugs, like Tamiflu, to treat symptoms. At Primary Care Partners of South Bend, we recommend getting plenty of rest and drinking lots of fluids. In most cases, the flu passes in five to seven days.

COVID-19

COVID-19, sometimes called coronavirus, is an illness caused by a virus that spreads rapidly from person to person. Cases of COVID-19 can range from mild to severe. Symptoms include fever, cough, shortness of breath, chest pain, fatigue, nausea, diarrhea, body aches, and loss of smell. If you have COVID-19 symptoms, contact your doctor immediately. We may need to test patients with key symptoms. If you expect COVID-19, avoid others and quarantine for fourteen days. Importantly, inform any people you have come into contact with in the last fourteen days. There is currently no cure for COVID-19 except for ibuprofen or acetaminophen, drinking fluids, and getting plenty of rest. For updated information on COVID-19, visit the CDC website.

Strep

Strep is a bacterial infection in the throat that causes inflammation and pain. This infection can affect both children and adults. Common symptoms of strep throat include a sore throat, fever, headache, chills, swollen lymph nodes, and difficulty swallowing. Existing patients may come into the office without an appointment for a strep test. Antibiotics are necessary to treat strep throat, so walk-in if you are showing symptoms. If you are experiencing mono, RSV, flu, strep, or COVID-19 symptoms, contact us online or call us at (574) 251-1200 to set up your appointment

Diagnostic Care for Diabetes

Diabetes is a condition in which the body cannot make or use its own insulin. It can cause very high blood sugar levels. Insulin is a hormone produced in the pancreas that helps the body produce energy. There are two types of diabetes: type 1 and type 2.

Type 1 Diabetes

Type 1 diabetes is usually detected in young children. It is a condition where the pancreas produces very little or no insulin. There is no cure for type 1 diabetes, however, it is manageable. Some symptoms to look for in a type 1 diabetic are an increase in thirst, hunger, or urination. Type 1 diabetics may also experience weight loss, blurred vision, and fatigue. If you notice any of these symptoms in your child, give us a call at (574) 251-1200 or contact us online to schedule a blood test. 

Type 2 Diabetes

Type 2 diabetes is a condition where the body cannot produce enough insulin, also referred to as insulin resistant. Those with type 2 diabetes are normally middle-aged or adult. However, children may develop type 2 diabetes as well. Some causes of type 2 diabetes are genes, extra weight, or eating excessive amounts of unhealthy foods. Symptoms include excessive thirst, blurry vision, fatigue, wounds unable to heal properly, numb hands/feet, and weight loss. If you notice these symptoms in your body, call Primary Care Partners of South Bend at (574) 251-1200 or contact us online to schedule an appointment.

Glucose, A1C & Microalbumin

Glucose

Blood sugar, or glucose is a product our body makes to give us energy. When you eat, that food travels down into your stomach. Then, that food breaks down into tiny pieces, and glucose releases. Following its release, glucose travels through the intestines and into the bloodstream. Insulin helps get glucose to cells to create energy. A person with diabetes cannot produce or use insulin properly. Therefore they have very high glucose levels. High glucose levels can be dangerous and lead to hospitalization if not treated properly. To learn more about diabetes and glucose, schedule a diagnostic care appointment online or give us a call at (574) 251-1200.

A1C

A1C is a blood test for type 2 diabetes and prediabetes. This test tells your average level of blood sugar from the past 2 or 3 months. Those diagnosed with or at risk of diabetes must take this test regularly to see if their levels are in the healthy range. Doctors may recommend this test for adults over the age of 45 to ensure that they are healthy and not at risk of diabetes. To learn more about the A1C test, contact us online or call Primary Care Partners of South Bend at (574) 251-1200.

Microalbumin

A microalbumin test is a urine test used to detect early signs of kidney damage. This test checks for small amounts of a protein called albumin. Albumin is a blood protein that a normal kidney holds onto, and filters out other waste. Kidneys with damage can allow these healthy proteins to leak out of the body. Those with type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes, and high blood pressure are more susceptible to kidney disease. Your Primary Care Partners of South Bend doctor may recommend a microalbumin test if you have, or are at risk for any of these conditions.

Diagnostic Care for BV, Trich & Yeast

BV

BV, or bacterial vaginosis, is an infection of the vagina. Normally, there are both good and bad bacteria in the vagina. The good bacteria help to fight the bad bacteria. Bacterial vaginosis occurs when bad bacteria overpower the good bacteria. Symptoms include burning during urination, itching, or a foul smell. Our diagnostic care team can diagnose you by performing a pelvic exam, testing vaginal secretion, or testing vaginal pH levels. In some cases, we may recommend a medication to treat BV. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, call Primary Care Partners of South Bend at (574) 251-1200 or contact us online to schedule your appointment.

Trich

Trichomoniasis is an STD that is caused by a parasite spread through unprotected sexual contact. Doctors can diagnose trich by examining a sample of vaginal fluid. Some common symptoms of trich are irritation and itching, unusual smelling discharge, and painful or frequent urination. In some cases, antibiotics may be necessary to treat trich. Call Primary Care Partners of South Bend at (574) 251-1200 or contact us online if you are experiencing any of these symptoms.

Yeast

Yeast infections can be uncomfortable and sometimes painful. A yeast infection occurs when healthy yeast that is normally found in the vagina grows out of control. Some causes of yeast infections are antibiotics, diabetes, pregnancy, or a weak immune system. The good news is yeast infections can clear up quickly with anti-fungal medication. If you are experiencing vaginal discomfort, schedule a diagnostic care appointment online, or give us a call at (574) 251-1200.

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