A close-up of two anemia panel blood test samples.

Anemia Panel – Which Tests are Included and When to Get One?

A close-up of two anemia panel blood test samples.

For many, it is very important to ensure their body has what it needs to operate at peak health. Unfortunately, despite their best efforts, they may be experiencing a series of negative symptoms for which they can’t find a solution. In these situations, testing and diagnostic panels can prove extremely valuable in identifying the cause of the symptoms. 

The following sections will discuss what tests are included in an anemia panel, how to know when to get one, and the importance of early detection and diagnosis. We will also go over the best ways to get a panel.


What is Anemia?

Anemia occurs when there is a drop in red blood cells or a lower concentration of hemoglobin in the blood, leading to a reduced capacity of the blood to carry oxygen to the body’s tissues. Anemia affects people of all ages and genders. There are different types of anemia, including iron-deficiency anemia, sickle cell anemia, vitamin-deficiency anemia, and more.

Early detection and performing a test for anemia are important, as they can aid in early treatment and prevent any further health complications.

What is an Anemia Panel?

An anemia panel1 is a series of tests performed to diagnose anemia. The tests included in an anemia panel are:

  • Hemoglobin: red blood cells, erythrocytes, traveling through the blood vessels.This test measures the amount of hemoglobin in the blood, an iron-rich protein that carries oxygen to the body’s tissues.
  • Hematocrit: Measures the proportion of red blood cells to the total blood volume.
  • Red blood cell count: The number of red blood cells in a blood sample.
  • MCV or mean corpuscular volume: Measures the average size of red blood cells.
  • MCHC or mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration: Measures the average amount of hemoglobin in red blood cells.

These tests are important in determining the type and cause of anemia and the severity of the condition. For example, iron-deficiency anemia can be diagnosed by low hemoglobin and hematocrit levels, while vitamin-deficiency anemia can be diagnosed by low MCV and MCHC levels.

It’s important to know that anemia panels may also include other tests, like a complete blood count (CBC), iron studies, and vitamin B12 and folate levels, to rule out other health problems that could be causing the anemia.

The CBC test gives a full picture of all the parts of the blood, while the iron studies measure how much iron, ferritin, and transferrin are in the blood. The vitamin B12 and folate levels test can help determine if these vitamins are deficient and contribute to anemia.

Getting an anemia panel done by a doctor or medical professional is crucial. The results from an anemia panel can provide critical information about a person’s health and help guide treatment decisions. Early detection and diagnosis of anemia can stop it from getting worse and ensure that it is treated quickly and effectively.

An anemia panel is a thorough and necessary way to diagnose anemia in people who show signs of it or are at high risk. By knowing what tests are in an anemia panel, people can learn more about their health and take the necessary steps to make their lives healthier.

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Who should Get an Anemia Panel?

Anemia is a challenge that affects many people and can significantly impact their quality of life if left undiagnosed and untreated. Anemia panels are an important tool for detecting and diagnosing anemia.

A pregnant woman holding her belly while walking in the part at sunrise.People who may benefit from regular anemia panels include:

  • Pregnant women
  • Individuals with chronic illnesses
  • Elderly individuals
  • Vegetarians and vegans
  • People who have undergone surgery or lost blood
  • People with a family history of anemia

It is important to seek medical advice and get an anemia panel if you are experiencing symptoms of anemia or are part of a high-risk group. Early detection and diagnosis are essential for managing anemia and preventing it from worsening.

Anemia Symptoms

Anemia is characterized by an insufficient amount of red blood cells, which carry oxygen to the tissues of the body. The signs of anemia can differ depending on what’s causing it and how bad it is.

However, some common symptoms of anemia include the following.


A woman holding her forehead while tilting her head and having her eyes closed.This is one of the most common signs of anemia. Fatigue is the feeling of being tired and weak, even after getting enough sleep. People with anemia may feel fatigued even after engaging in light physical activity.


In addition to fatigue, anemia can cause weakness and a general feeling of malaise. This can make it hard to do even simple things, lowering the quality of life.

Pale Skin

Another common symptom of anemia is pale skin, which results from a reduced number of red blood cells. This can cause the skin to look pale and dull and be accompanied by dark circles under the eyes.

Shortness of Breath

People with anemia may feel like they can’t get enough air, especially when moving around. This happens because the body isn’t getting enough oxygen to meet its needs, which can produce labored breathing even with the simplest tasks.


Anemia can cause dizziness and lightheadedness, especially when getting up from a sitting or lying position. This can result from reduced oxygen flow to the brain, which can cause a feeling of instability and dizziness.

Rapid Heartbeat

Anemia can cause a rapid heartbeat, resulting from the heart having to work harder to pump oxygen-rich blood to the body’s tissues. This can cause palpitations and indicate a more serious underlying condition.

In addition to these symptoms, other risk factors for anemia include:


An elder lady wiping her eyes and eyeglasses in black and white photo.The risk of developing anemia increases, especially in older adults. This is because the body makes fewer red blood cells and has a higher risk of getting chronic diseases and not getting enough nutrients. Older adults are also more likely to have conditions that contribute to anemia, such as gastrointestinal bleeding, kidney disease, and a diet low in iron.


Women have a higher risk of anemia due to their menstrual cycles and pregnancy. Anemia is more likely to happen to women with heavy or long menstrual periods or who are pregnant.

Medical Conditions

Certain conditions, such as kidney and celiac disease, can increase the risk of anemia. Kidney disease affects the body’s ability to produce erythropoietin, a hormone that stimulates red blood cell production. Celiac disease hurts the small intestine and makes it hard to absorb iron and other nutrients.

A diet low in iron can also make you more likely to get anemia because iron is an important part of hemoglobin, the protein that carries oxygen through the blood.

If you notice any signs of anemia, you should see a doctor immediately. Early diagnosis and treatment can keep the condition from worsening and causing a cascade of negative conditions. Your doctor can do an anemia panel to figure out what’s causing your symptoms and make a plan for how to treat them.

How is an Anemia Panel Performed?

A nurse performing a blood draw on a patient.An anemia panel is a diagnostic test involving drawing a blood sample from the arm. This sample from your anemia blood test is then sent to a laboratory for analysis. Before the test, you should not eat or drink anything for 8–12 hours and shouldn’t take any iron supplements or multivitamins.

Depending on the type of test, the lab will look at the sample to find the levels of hemoglobin, hematocrit, the number of red blood cells, and iron in the blood. These measurements are critical in determining if an individual has anemia and the type of anemia they may have. The results of the anemia panel are usually ready within a few days and will help a doctor diagnose and form a treatment plan.

What can the Anemia Panel Results Reveal to You?

Anemia test results can provide a wealth of information about a person’s health and aid in diagnosing and treating anemia. The results of the tests can reveal if a person has anemia, the type of anemia, and the severity of the condition. The results of the anemia panel can be used to help determine the best course of action for treatment.

A close-up of anemia panel test results while the doctor is holding a blood container with protective blue gloves over the paper.Normal levels of hemoglobin and hematocrit range for men are between 13.5–17.5 g/dL and 38–47%, respectively. If the results of the hemoglobin and hematocrit tests show lower levels than these normal ranges, it may indicate the presence of anemia. To make a diagnosis, a doctor may also consider the results of other tests, such as the red blood cell count, MCV, and MCHC.

If a person is found to have anemia, a doctor may suggest more tests to find out what causes the anemia. These tests may include iron studies, vitamin and mineral tests, and tests to rule out underlying health conditions. Based on the results of these tests, a doctor may recommend treatment such as iron IV therapy.

In addition to anemia, low iron or other vitamin and mineral levels can also indicate underlying health conditions. For example, low iron levels in the blood can be a symptom of celiac disease or kidney disease. A doctor may suggest more tests and treatments to help manage these underlying problems and improve the health of the person as a whole.

Anemia panel results can also help a person monitor the effectiveness of their treatment. If someone is being treated for anemia, they can use the results of the anemia panel to monitor treatment progress. If the results show that the treatment is not effective, a doctor may recommend a different approach. An anemia panel can be an important first step in identifying anemia or whatever else may cause your symptoms.

Where to Get an Anemia Panel 

As we’ve already said, anemia panels are crucial for finding and diagnosing anemia early on. It’s important to know what kind of anemia you have and what’s causing it so it can be fixed without causing additional harm. In the past, traditional methods of getting a panel done required scheduling an appointment and taking a long commute to a hospital or medical clinic.

While this method is still available, a growing number of people are opting for an at-home anemia panel. A doctor can perform an anemia panel at home, making testing more accessible and convenient, especially for those who have busy schedules or small children at home. Additionally, an at-home anemia panel eliminates the need to travel, saving time and money. It saves time and reduces stress for many.

The process is very simple. After booking an at-home anemia panel online or over the phone, a trained medical professional will come to your home to collect the necessary blood samples. The samples will then be sent to a laboratory for analysis. When the results are ready, you’ll get a report that tells you how your anemia panel turned out.

If you need to discuss your results with a doctor, you can either schedule an in-person or virtual consultation. The doctor will review your results during the consultation and help you develop an action plan.

Whether you opt for an at-home consultation or a virtual one, you will receive the same level of care and attention as you would in a traditional medical office.



As you can see, getting an anemia panel is crucial for the early detection and diagnosis of anemia. With the advancement of medical services, you can now get an anemia panel done at home, saving time, reducing stress, and providing more convenient access to professional medical care.

To schedule an anemia test at home is as simple as calling or booking on the website at the most convenient time. Once the results come in, you will be armed with the information you need to have peace of mind and plan for a healthier outcome if needed. With the growing popularity of at-home anemia panels, getting the resources you need to manage your health is easier than ever.

We encourage you to reach out to our office for more information.

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Lab Testing - Frequently Asked Questions

Why is it important to do lab tests occasionally?

It is important to do lab tests occasionally because they can provide valuable information about an individual's health and help to identify potential health issues early on. Lab tests can measure a wide range of factors, including blood count, cholesterol levels, liver and kidney function, and hormone levels, and can provide insight into an individual's overall health and wellness. Additionally, lab tests can help to diagnose and monitor the progression of certain medical conditions, such as diabetes and heart disease, and can help to identify any potential health risks or concerns. By doing lab tests occasionally, individuals can take proactive steps to maintain their health and wellbeing and reduce the risk of potential health problems in the future.

What does a routine blood test cover?

A routine blood test is used to check for a range of things, including your blood count and the levels of certain chemicals and substances in your blood. Blood tests can also be used to check how well certain organs, such as your liver and kidneys, are functioning.

How is a blood sample collected for lab testing?

A blood sample for lab testing is typically collected through a process called venipuncture, which involves inserting a small needle into a vein to draw blood. This is usually done on the inside of the elbow or the back of the hand.

What is the cost of a lab test?

In general, the cost of a lab test can range from a few dollars to several hundred dollars. It is always best to consult with your doctor or healthcare provider to get an accurate estimate of the cost of a lab test.

Read More: Lab Testing FAQ


[1] Freeman AM, Rai M, Morando DW. - Anemia Screening. In: StatPearls. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2022 Jan. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK499905/;