LetsGetChecked Review 2021: Are At-Home Test Kits Accurate?
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Are you looking to get to the root cause of your symptoms, or do you simply want to learn how to optimise your health? One of the most effective ways is finding suitable and reliable health testing. This review explains how LetsGetChecked can help you uncover the reason(s) for your health issues or symptoms and learn how to feel better. I will also share with you my LetsGetChecked experience and lab test results.
So, keep reading to find out if you should take LetGetChecked’s tests.
At the end of 2020, I began suffering from symptoms that I had never experienced. At first, I attributed the symptoms to fatigue or 'burnout' and believed that everything would be fine if I just took some time off from work. But several months passed and I saw no improvement. Instead, my health went from bad to worse. Since I saw no improvement and felt like my health was only deteriorating month by month, my desire to get to the bottom of my symptoms grew.
The theories for what may be driving these symptoms increased. Nonetheless, speculating didn’t help.
I needed answers to my questions, and I wanted them fast. I was tired of feeling exhausted and experiencing pain in my body.
I knew the only way to uncover those answers and discover the root cause was through health testing.
Unfortunately, visiting a doctor to schedule the required tests was much more difficult and even impossible last year. The health care system was overwhelmed and preoccupied with the spread of the virus.
The world was in lockdown and the pandemic upended life as we knew it.
But irrespective of the pandemic, my symptoms made leaving the house a struggle. The act of simply waking up and getting out of bed, let alone leaving the house, was a daily struggle. I was exhausted, my whole body felt heavy, my joints were in pain and my mental health wasn’t the best either.
With the traditional route of seeking support and answers from the hospital ruled out (for the time being), I needed an alternative way to get the answers I desperately wanted. Through my research, I came across at-home health testing.
Now I know you are probably thinking, 'are at-home test kits accurate and therefore worth the money?'
I will be honest and say that I was sceptical about using at-home test kits. It's common for us to think that we must be in a medical setting to undergo blood tests, etc.
But that isn't true!
Check this out.
LetsGetChecked's tests are physician-approved and are as accurate as tests you would take in a healthcare facility. The methods used to test your samples, including blood, stool, urine, are the same methods you would find when visiting healthcare facilities. Tests are analysed in labs that are CLIA certified and CAP-accredited in the US, and ISO 15189 accredited in the UK.
The collection method for the majority of LetsGetChecked's tests is a finger prick. A finger prick is a form of capillary blood sampling, while the blood that is usually taken from your arm by a medical professional is venous (blood taken from a vein).
Capillary vs Venous Blood Sampling
So, here’s the thing.
1 2 3 Researchers identify that capillary blood sampling is an accurate and reliable alternative to venous blood. Experts suggest that in most cases, the differences between capillary and venous blood are minimal. Further advantages of capillary blood sampling include
- the collection is quick and simple
- less invasive and relatively painless
- requires smaller amounts of blood volume
However, not all lab tests can use capillary samples and LetsGetChecked are aware of the potential differences between both methods.
They state, “before we offer a new lab test, also known as an assay, a team of our clinical experts and lab technicians validate how well capillary blood works for the particular test, compared venous blood. The tests are checked to make sure they perform as well in capillary blood as they do in venous blood. The blood sample tubes contain a clot activator with gel for serum separation, the gel is very thinly coated on the inside of the tube and may not be obvious when looking at it. These tubes have been specifically designed to enable small volume testing.”
All kits come with clear instructions that guide you on how to take your sample. So as long as the test is done correctly, at-home test kits are accurate.
Potential factors that can lead to inaccurate results include
- Insufficient sample size. Many people find it difficult to get enough blood from a finger prick. If the sample is too small the lab will not have enough plasma for testing.
- Squeezing the finger too tightly. It is common for people to squeeze or ‘milk their finger’ to get a large enough sample. But this can cause red blood cells to burst and increases the probability of haemolysis
You now know the validity of at-home testing kits, so let’s take a deeper look at who LetsGetChecked is and what they do.
CEO and founder Peter Foley saw first-hand the value and power early screening can have on preventing the development of conditions that could otherwise go undiagnosed. As a result of his experience, Peter became compelled to get people to take an active role in their health and help people get access to appropriate testing.
I think you will agree with me that getting the necessary PCOS testing you need can be difficult.
It may be that your healthcare provider is not very supportive and brushes you off without delving deep enough to establish the root cause. Or the reason may be that you purely do not have the time to visit your doctor.
That’s where LetsGetChecked comes in.
LetsGetChecked have cut out the middleman and have made medical testing more efficient. They offer easily accessible at-home testing and professional medical consultations without ever having to leave your home.
LetsGetChecked offers 34 different test kits to assess various health characteristics based on biomarkers. “A biomarker is a measurable indicator of the severity or presence of some disease state. More generally a biomarker is anything that can be used as an indicator of a particular disease state or some other physiological state of an organism.”
Depending on the biomarker tested, a specific collection method is needed.
LetsGetChecked is for anyone who is looking to understand and optimise their health. Their wide range of test kits help customers understand their fertility, metabolic and cardiovascular health.
Ultimately it benefits anyone who wants to use advanced and accurate technology to improve their health. If that sounds at all like you, then LetsGetChecked is for YOU.
LetsGetChecked is partnered with a highly accredited network of laboratories, including CAP and ISO accreditation and CLIA certification. Through robotics, barcoding and automation, customer samples are processed in an anonymous and timely manner. With such revolutionary technology, LetsGetChecked ensures a quick analysis of samples and results within two to five business days.
So, the way it works is super simple.
1.You order a test kit online from LetGetChecked’s website. You have the option to choose free standard delivery or paid express delivery at the checkout. If you choose standard shipping, you will receive your test kit within 5-7 days. With express shipping, it will arrive in 1-3 days, depending on your location. LetsGetChecked delivers all test kits in discreet packaging with clear instructions.
2. Before you collect your sample, you must first activate your test on the LetsGetChecked website. You will need your activation card to activate your test, which includes your test kit's LGC code and Alpha-numeric code.
Test activation is needed to ensure your sample is processed and so you can keep track of your test at every stage of the process. A short health questionnaire will also appear as you activate your test. Your answers will give the nurse some background on your health status before the consultation.
3. Once you have activated your test, you can go ahead and collect your sample. Your test kit will include instructions on how to collect your sample and everything you need to complete your test. LetsGetChecked recommends most test be taken on a Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday before 10 am and returned the same day.
It is best to complete your test early during the week to ensure your sample reaches the lab before the weekend. Do not mail your sample on Friday or on the weekend.
4. Once you have collected your sample, there is a biohazard bag for you to place it in. You must then return this bag to the test kit box. Make sure also to fill out the inner lid sticker of the box. Inside your test kit, there is a prepaid shipping envelope for you to return your sample to the laboratory. LetsGetChecked allows you to track your sample in your secure online account. You will receive a notification once it arrives in their lab.
5. From there, LetsGetChecked lab reviews your sample and shares your results with you, via your secure online account within 2 to 5 days. It is super quick, seamless and your results are confidential.
A nursing team member may call you for a consultation over the phone to discuss your results before they are made available to you in your account. LetsGetChecked also provides a PDF copy of the results in your online account, which you can print off and show your doctor. Finally, in some cases, the physician will provide prescriptions for you to the pharmacy of your choosing.
LetsGetChecked's test kits are physician-approved and labs that are CLIA certified and CAP-accredited in the US, and ISO 15189 accredited in the UK analyse test samples. The equipment and analysers used in LetsGetChecked’s partner labs are the same as those you would find in a healthcare facility.
Once LetsGetChecked’s laboratory has tested your sample, a team of medical professionals views the results.
Now for many of us, these numbers don’t mean much. Rest assured that you won’t have to figure out what your lab results mean. In your account dashboard, you will learn where your labs fall in on the optimal range, with LetsGetChecked indicating beside each biomarker ‘Normal’, ‘Low’ and ‘High’.
It is important to note here that LetsGetChecked does not diagnose. LetsGetChecked's at-home test kits are simply an alternative way for people to learn and stay on top of their health all from the comfort of their homes. By using LetsGetChecked test kits, the goal is to feel more empowered about your health and prevent conditions.
After the doctor has reviewed your results, a nursing team member contacts you over the phone to explain your results and discuss the next steps. So just as you would expect a call from your doctor to talk you through your results, you can expect the same customer care with LetsGetChecked.
The nurse will provide advice and recommendations on lifestyle changes during the consultation based on your health results.
The consultation makes you feel valued, and the tailored advice based on the customers’ needs is incredible. But as I mentioned, LetsGetChecked does not diagnose, and they cannot provide treatment plans. The company state in their Terms of Service “THE PRODUCTS AVAILABLE THROUGH THE SITE ARE FOR GENERAL GUIDANCE ONLY AND ARE NOT A SUBSTITUTE FOR PROFESSIONAL MEDICAL ADVICE.”
So, before you change anything in your diet or lifestyle, always consult your doctor first.
When it comes to female fertility testing, knowing what days to test certain hormones can be confusing. A lot of the time, we find ourselves guessing. We hope this day that we have chosen is the right day to test our progesterone, for example.
I think you will agree with me when I say this is stressful and difficult, especially if you have PCOS and irregular cycles.
Now, as you know, our hormone levels change throughout the menstrual cycle. So, when you are looking to test fertility hormones like progesterone, you want to make sure you take a sample on the correct days. LetsGetChecked provide a calculator on their female fertility testing page to help you to determine when you should take your test.
I also want to mention that LetsGetChecked has a tab below each test explaining ‘when to test’ for the most accurate results.
The thought of running a test, like drawing blood by yourself, sounds scary and overwhelming, but LetsGetChecked has made the whole process super simple.
Whatever stage in the process you are in, whether it’s ordering and activating the test kit or collecting your sample, LetsGetChecked has provided easy-to-follow step-by-step instructions. They have made something that sounds complicated, effortless. So, this way anyone can run a test as and when they want.
You have the option to link all your wearable data, such as GARMIN and Apple Health, to get deeper insights into your health. Once connected, you can track your lab results and various other health information all in your dashboard. With such a feature, you can become more informed about your health and what lifestyle changes can help.
LetsGetChecked’s care team is available around the clock to support you with your queries. Their customer support team is available 24/7 and their dedicated team of Nurses is available to assist you from 3am to midnight Eastern Time (8am to 5am GMT).
You have lots of access to the LetsGetChecked team, so you can get the help you need when you need it.
With over 30 at-home tests available, there is a wide variety to explore. So whatever health marker you want to track or improve, LetsGetChecked may have the test kit for you!
Some of their most popular at-home tests include Female Hormone Test, Diabetes Test, Coronavirus Test (COVID-19), Bowel Cancer Screening Test, Sexual Health Range, Male Hormone Range, Thyroid Range, and Cortisol.
The final feature that I want to touch on is the electronic prescribing system (e-prescribing or e-Rx). The E-Rx system is a computer-based electronic generation, transmission, and filling of a medical prescription. So, in addition to the nurse explaining your results and providing lifestyle recommendations based on your health results, in some cases, they prescribe medication free of charge to the pharmacy of your choosing. Offering customers with this service sets LetsGetChecked apart from its competitors.
This section will look at what comes inside LetsGetChecked’s test kits and how much they cost.
Individual tests start at £39 and the price increases as the number of biomarkers tested increases. But LetsGetChecked offers options where you can save money. Options include bundling multiple tests or subscribing for repeat testing (choose between 3, 6 or 12-month deliveries) at a discounted rate.
The majority of LetsGetChecked’s tests require a blood sample. So, you will find a lancet to prick your finger and a small collection tube. Other tests require saliva, urine, vaginal, faecal, or a nose swab sample. Detailed instructions on collecting the required sample are available on LetsGetChecked’s Vimeo account.
All test kits include an activation code, a biohazard bag, a prepaid shipping label, alcohol swab and a band-aid.
Now you may be thinking, ‘the price of the kits is still quite high.’ Understandably, you may be more prudent about investing your money into an at-home test kit.
So, check this out.
In the United Kingdom, there is the National Health Service (NHS), a public-funded health care system for UK citizens.
Through the NHS, UK residents can, for example, visit a doctor who will offer diagnosis or treatment for a condition without asking the individual to pay for this service during or after the visit.
So, ordering blood tests through your General Practitioner (GP)/the NHS is free. Meaning there is no upfront or after cost.
But, as a British citizen, I have found that you often need a good enough reason to request a blood test when going through the NHS.
The second option is to go private. Choosing private medical treatment means shorter waiting times and the doctor is more likely to run lengthy tests. But of course, as you know, going private can be pricey.
Health Care in the United States
Unlike the UK, the United States does not have anything equivalent to the NHS. In the US, there are no health benefits for citizens. If you want medical care, you must pay, and it’s not cheap!
To save some money on these considerable large health care costs, you need medical insurance. The number of uninsured Americans has fallen, but there are still many people living without health coverage.
With no insurance, bloodwork in the US can become very expensive and you will have to pay for the expenses out of your pocket. Blood work pricing at a lab can range anywhere from $283-$675. A patient who has no insurance will be charged on average $1,500 to get blood work done.
Understandably, no one would be happy to pay such a considerable amount for blood tests. So having access to at-home test kits, like LetsGetChecked, allows you to track your health and make improvements at affordable prices.
But this isn’t to say that you shouldn’t visit your doctor.
Your Doctor Is Still Your First Line Of Defence
You should always visit your primary care physician as they are your first line of defence against any health problems. Consult a medical professional if you are experiencing symptoms.
With that said, if you like to run blood work regularly or if you want to start your health journey, ordering an at-home test kit can be a great option.
In this part of the review, I am going to share with you my experience using LetsGetChecked.
As a woman with PCOS interested in tracking and improving my health, I can honestly say LetsGetChecked is incredibly useful. Before I gave LetsGetChecked a try, I was sceptical about using at-home test kits. I questioned their accuracy and reliability. I thought, surely health tests need to be done in a hospital and with the guidance of a medical professional?
You, too, may be having these same thoughts.
But here’s the thing.
The truth is that, yes, your doctor is the only person that can diagnose you. But when it comes to preventative health, at-home test kits can be a valuable tool. So LetsGetChecked has simply made health testing more accessible and allowed people to take a more proactive approach in learning about their health.
Before I delve into my results, I want to share with you my symptoms and the test kit I ordered from LetsGetChecked. The symptoms I was experiencing included
- Hair loss
- Joint pain
- Brain fog/impaired memory
- Digestive issues
- Dry skin
- Weight gain
Based on the above symptoms, I chose to test my thyroid. I ordered LetsGetChecked’s thyroid antibody test, which identifies thyroid dysfunction or damage. The biomarkers the test measures include
- Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH)
- Free Thyroxine (FT4)
- Free Triiodothyronine (FT3)
- Thyroglobulin Antibodies (TGAB)
- Thyroid Peroxidase Antibodies (TPO/TPEX)
- Thyroxine (T4)
I have never tested my thyroid antibodies or even my FT3 before because doctors rarely run these biomarkers when testing the thyroid. It is common for doctors only to test TSH and T4. But as you can see, there is more to the thyroid than these two hormones. So, I was excited to see LetsGetChecked offering a test kit with these biomarkers.
I ordered the thyroid antibody test and within 2 days I received the kit. It came delivered in discreet packaging, which is great if you don’t want the postman or neighbours peeking into your health tests!
After I activated my test, I collected my blood sample. The collection tube is quite small and it is already filled a quarter of the way with a clot activator for serum separation. Filling the tube doesn't take long, especially if you follow LetsGetCheked' tips, which include:
- Staying hydrated
- Showering before you take your test or running your hands under warm water for a few minutes.
- Doing some light exercise to get your blood flowing.
- Making sure your arm is below your heart level - let gravity do some of the work.
- Cutting long fingernails as they can make it collection difficult, instead of blood dropping into the tube in drips into the nail. So, not very helpful!
Once I filled my tube, I sent it off to the lab using the prepaid shipping label provided.
Within 3 days, I received a text message notifying me that LetsGetChecked had processed my sample and that my results were available to view in my online account dashboard- I know, quick turnaround! The email also mentioned that a nurse would call me for a consultation over the phone.
As you can see from my test results, my thyroid hormone came back normal. But the test revealed that I had high thyroid antibodies, specifically my Thyroglobulin antibodies (TGAB).
Now, of course, seeing my TGAB high shocked me a little. But, on the other hand, it finally revealed the reason behind my symptoms.
You might be wondering what are thyroid antibodies?
Antibodies are proteins produced by the immune system to protect us from viruses and bacteria that cause infections. Now thyroid antibodies attack and damage the thyroid gland.
Here’s the thing.
The immune system can wrongly attack the body’s tissues like components of the thyroid gland or thyroid proteins because it mistakes them for foreign invaders. This is known as an autoimmune response. When the immune system attacks the thyroid, an autoimmune thyroid disorder can develop. The thyroid becomes damaged and inflamed, leading to thyroid conditions like hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism.
It is important to address high thyroid antibodies and autoimmune responses to prevent the complete destruction of the thyroid gland.
The nurse was very supportive and reassuring while explaining my results. She talked me through my results, explaining what it means to have high thyroid antibodies and what can cause it. The nurse also offered me some lifestyle recommendations to help lower the antibodies.
The nurses' advice and recommendations were super helpful.
At the end of the consultation, we agreed that I should follow a gluten-free diet. If you want to find out why gluten-free and my experience avoiding it, check out my YouTube video.
All in all, the consultation with the nurse was very insightful.
Let’s look at the pros and cons of using LetsGetChecked.
- Large selection of tests
- The price of the test kits is reasonable
- Discreet packaging-Great if you don’t want anyone to know what health test you have ordered!
- Clear and simple to use
- Seamless and professional process
- Consultation with nurse
- Track order
- Quick turnaround
- Partner lab facilities are CLIA, INAB, CPA, or CAP certified to ensure test accuracy
- Able to track your labs and health information from one place
- Downloadable PDF result report to show your doctor
- FDA approved
- You must collect your blood in a small tube on your own which can be tricky, especially if you don’t like looking at blood.
- It can be frustrating if you are someone who’s blood flow is slow, and you constantly find yourself squeezing your finger to draw enough blood.
- Ordering several single-test kits can get pricey
- Test kits expire
When it comes to health, we should be proactive and open to educating ourselves. LetsGetChecked’s tests offer consumers greater control over their health and the test kits are an excellent tool for preventative health. Become a health advocate, get the care and the resources you need to understand your health better.
As I wrap up my LetsGetChecked review, I want to share with you a few key features that I loved.
Convenience and Ease of use
In all honesty, I was amazed by how quick and easy it was to use LetsGetChecked.
At-home test kits are super convenient and affordable if your doctor dismisses your symptoms and won't run tests.
LetsGetChecked was highly professional and efficient in its processes. I was pleased and impressed with the whole experience, from purchase up to the consultation with the nurse which was exceptional.
I was intrigued to see a large variety of test kits. LetsGetChecked offers the standard tests your doctor would usually run like female hormones (LH, FSH, estrogen and progesterone) and cholesterol. But also, those that are less common such as c-reactive protein and thyroid antibodies.
With access to a range of tests, I can measure and track different markers of my health without constantly visiting a doctor.
The tailored consultation with the nurse is one of the reasons why I like using LetsGetChecked. The nursing team is super helpful, and they do a great job of helping you interpret your results.
The personalised consultation makes you feel valued. It shows that LetsGetChecked cares about their customers' health and wants to equip them with the information they need to improve their health.
I loved having the opportunity to speak with a medical professional about my test results and then getting their advice/recommendations on the next steps.
Thanks to LetsGetChecked’s at-home test kits, I discovered the reason for my long list of symptoms. Since my first test, I have ordered several others and I have made lifestyle changes to improve my health. Visually tracking my lab results in my account and seeing the improvements is highly motivating!
I believe everyone should have access to hormone testing and LetsGetChecked makes that possible. It's never been this simple to stay on top of your hormonal health! Check out LetsGetChecked today.
Your health should never take a backseat!
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Hey there! I am Despina Pavlou, founder of PCOS Oracle, certified personal trainer and corrective exercise specialist. I want to share with you the diet and lifestyle changes I made to naturally reverse my PCOS and achieve hormonal balance. I believe using my holistic approach you too can take back control from PCOS.