Do you remember this lady, Julia Cheek, at Shark Tank on ABC? Her company EverlyWell received a $1 million investment from the sharks. As a result, the home diagnostics market is huge, and when I say huge, I mean $6.53 Billion by 2025. Fifty years ago, the only Point-of-Care test available was the ever-famous pregnancy test.
Nowadays, nearly everything can be tested from the comfort of your home: from cardiac health to the microbiome and even the DNA. At-home medical tests are, by definition, self-diagnosis tests. However, being not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration, the results’ quality and reliability can raise concerns.
Being not regulated, the companies offering them can charge as much as they want, and the Insurance companies will not reimburse them. These tests may be able to diagnose medical conditions, but ultimately health professionals should also be involved.
Benefits of at-home diagnostics tests
For patients suffering from conditions. Being able to measure your blood glucose, blood pressure, or coagulation level is critical. I have been taking anti-coagulant daily for more than 10 years. Anti-vitamin K, such as Warfarin, is dangerous.
It is key to monitor the coagulation level, especially considering that a change in diet or alcohol consumption can significantly affect. I had to travel extensively for my work, and I could not always go to a medical biology lab to check my coagulation status. Using an at-home diagnostic test kit has been a game-changer for me.
For people experiencing symptoms but not having the time or the will to go to the doctor, some home diagnostics can save time and relieve stress. For example, Everlywell Gonnorhea & Chlamidya tests can be an alternative to a potentially delicate visit to the doctor. Breath Analysers for alcohol can also be lifesavers and are easy to use and keep in your car.
23andMe is the uncontested leader in-home genetic testing. Following a saliva DNA sample collection, the company will test your DNA and provides 150 personalized genetic reports, including health predispositions. Percentages will outline the risks of developing a disease.
More than DNA ancestry analyses, companies also offer the possibility to test for paternity or even adapt your diet or fitness exercises according to your genetic make-up.
Some colorimetric tests can be difficult to interpret. Some urinary tests, such as the Vivo Keto, allows testing for proper kidney function. It comes with an app that allows you to scan the strip and get an accurate reading. The app offers personalized dietary advice according to the results of the test.
Drawbacks of at-home testing?
While the tests can be useful, the results should always be discussed with your primary care provider. Interpreting the test results without proper medical training can lead to unnecessary stress. The Oraquick Home HIV Test has a good reputation, is reasonably priced, and provides a quick answer (Check the Oraquick Home HIV Test on Amazon).
Home diagnostics tests should be taken for what they are: a quick and easy way to know more about your health but never as a definitive answer.
Food sensitivity tests as the next big thing
In the sanitized and processed meals we live in, Food allergies and sensitivities have never been so common. Both are triggered by an immune reaction and antibodies, IgE, and IgG production, respectively. If food allergy can be life-threatening, food sensitivity is less serious even though nausea, diarrhea, or skin rashes are never enjoyable symptoms.
Everlywell food sensitivity test involves a finger prick blood collection. Once returned, the sample will be analyzed in a CLIA-certified Laboratory. The IgG cross-reactivity analyses include 96 common food. After 10-15 days, results will be available online. They will present the level of reactivity on a scale from 0 to 3.
We consider it a good first approach to understand better how your body reacts to food and adapt your diet accordingly. Food allergy tests are a different story, and we strongly recommend leaving these to medical professionals.