A typical blood test measures several components of your blood to help determine your overall health. It looks at a number of elements in your blood, including blood sugar (glucose), calcium, electrolytes, creatine and kidney function. It determines levels of cholesterol and protein and how your liver is functioning.

A complete blood count, also called a CBC, looks for the number of white blood cells, which fight infection; platelets that help with clotting; hemoglogin, protein in red blood that carries oxygen; red blood cells, which carry oxygen throughout your body; and a hematocrit, the ratio of red blood cells to your total volume of blood.

Blood work can uncover many problems, including anemia, infection, heart disease and even cancer. We also test for the presence of alcohol or drugs.