PSA tests are common for men. A Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) Test measures the level of PSA in the blood. A blood sample is sent to the laboratory and the amount of PSA in the blood is measured. PSA is produced by prostate cells and the levels in the body can be used to detect disease.
When PSA levels are elevated it’s important for the doctor to find out why. The levels could be high for many reasons, from a bacterial infection to a tumor or cancer in the prostate. So when a standard blood test at my cardiologist showed high PSA levels I got concerned. The first thing I noticed is that even though the blood was drawn in my doctor’s office, it was sent to Lab Corp to be analyzed. It’s the only lab he uses so I had no choice but to use LabCorp. He immediately told me to go see a Urologist.
There’s only one Urologist that I felt comfortable with, Dr. Bejany in the University of Miami Clinic building. He is not only a friend, but one of the best Urologists in Miami, Florida.
Within a few days I was in his office with the original LabCorp test results showing elevated PSA levels. While he reviewed the results I told him that the test could have been faulty and that I am not confident in the results because it was performed by LabCorp. He said that it’s possible so he had his staff draw blood for another PSA test. I immediately noticed that his office also uses Laboratory Corporation of America for PSA tests.
The doctor wanted to rule out bacterial infections so he had me fill a cup with urine. That was also marked to be sent to LabCorp. I was then moved into an exam room where he performed a digital exam. After the physical exam he requested that I do a second urine test. From the time of the first test to the second one I had ample time to drink plenty of water. I once again filled another cup of urine and after I gave it to his nurse, she marked that one for LabCorp as well. So far so good as the tests went.
After a week I called the doctors office to see what the test results showed. The nurse on the phone was baffled and kept me on hold for a few minutes. She searched all her files but was unable to provide results. She explained that the person in the office who handled the test was out for the day and that she couldn’t find any of my results. She requested that I call the next day when she’s in the office. That was yesterday.
Today I eagerly called to get the results. As anyone with the possibility of having a life-altering disease can tell you, every day without results feels like a month. The receptionist on the phone checked my file and put me on hold. I was on hold for a few minutes when she returned and said that she was checking with someone else in the office about my results. After being on hold for another 4 minutes she answered that she was still looking for the PSA test results and once again put me on hold. Knowing the efficiency of this doctor I started to get concerned about what the results showed.
A few minutes went by and the doctor picked up the phone. He told me that the PSA blood test showed my PSA levels dropping since the first PSA test, but they were still above medically acceptable levels. I asked about the possibility of a bacterial infection versus a tumor or cancer and his response was something I was concerned about, the urine tests inexplicably showed no results. It had to happen to me AGAIN, LabCorp screwed up. LabCorp either lost or failed to process both of my urine samples.
Could it be that they intentionally threw out the samples because they know I’m the author of LabCorpSucks.com? That would take too much thinking on their part. From the way they run their operation, it would be giving them too much undeserved credit. Could it be that they just outright SUCK. That makes more sense to me. They not only lost one, but two urine samples. Talk about incompetence.
The doctor decided that it didn’t make sense to have me come in again for another urine test and wait another week. He prescribed antibiotics just in case a bacteria was causing the increased PSA levels. I was then requested to come in next month for another PSA blood test to see if the antibiotics resolved the problem. He was clearly frustrated at the LabCorp PSA test results, or should I say lack thereof. I wasn’t as I know that LabCorp sucks!
Tags: bacterial infection, blood test, blood test results, elevated psa levels, high psa levels, lab corp, labcorp, LabCorp Complaints, LabCorp Doctors, LabCorp Mistakes, laboratory Corporation of America, laboratory test, physical exam, prostate specific antigen, psa test, psa tests, test results, urine sample, urine test, urologist
Susan sent me an email that I find interesting. It’s an experience that many current and former LabCorp patients have lived through. It goes to the root of the problem, that the supervisors and managers at LabCorp, in my opinion, are some of the worst in the industry. I can’t blame the technicians, phlebotomists and clerks for their actions when the managers and supervisors fail to properly train them or even call to their attention their wrongdoings.
As many LabCorp employees have stated in this site “forget qualifications, if you kiss butt at LabCorp you move up.” In my personal case when I complained to Bob Blanco, the district manager, he insulted me and called me a liar. The director of patient services, Ana Garcia, also insulted me and said I was lying. This is how these bad managers cover their incompetence. If the employees are not doing their job appropriately, the managers are responsible. By supervisors closing their eyes to reality and making believe that everything is good, they believe that they did their job. The worst part is that the company executives believe them and instead of firing them, promote them. I predict that this fantasy land scenario will bring this company down, regardless of how much money they sucker out of Wall Street.
I am very bad with computers and didn’t see where to post my own story, but I have quite a tale that you can file with whomever you wish. I would title it “Lab Corp technicians are not fully trained to a competent level.” I sent a similar story to Lab Corp a while back and called our insurance company, BC/CS of NJ Directly this morning.
On January 22, 2010, I had a Glucose Tolerance Test (GTT) done at a Lab Corp. The technician told me I was scheduled to have a one hour GTT and directed me to drink the sugar water. Startled, I asked if they didn’t need to take a base line blood evaluation ahead. He said no, so I drank it. Fifteen minutes later a worker came rushing into the waiting room and said I needed to take a base line test IMMEDIATELY. The same now nervous tech took 3 tries getting my blood. Admitting I should have had the test prior to drinking, he also told me that I had only drunk 2/3 the amount of glucose required for that test, therefore guaranteeing me false results.
For the next 45 minutes I shivered on the table unable to get warm (shock?). I’ve had cancer and mono and so don’t take such tests lightly. During that time I heard my tech giving instructions on “how to do it” to yet another tech that was administering another GTT in a different room!
For the final blood drawing my tech tied the rubber tubing so tight around my arm that I yelled. He loosened it, but I had fairly continuous tingling in my hand for the next 5 or 6 days, and still do on occasion weeks later. Yet a new symptom and worst, when I went to get off the table I couldn’t walk. More than 5 weeks later I still have trouble walking. I pointed out to the insurance company this morning that they have spent an exorbitant amount on me for this mistaken test. I have been to emergency and specialists’ rooms fairly continuously since then. Indeed, I spent the night before last in the hospital under observation; the reason being that I could not stand at all.
I told our insurance company I was making a complaint about Lab Corp and “suggested” that they do one of two things. Either they should not have Lab Corps as their only covered lab or that they pressure the company to adequately train their technicians before releasing them to commit mayhem. Weeks ago I had written to Lab Corp that I didn’t feel that the technicians are the responsible parties when I see TWO at such a loss. I blame the company!
I was motivated to call this morning since I need yet another blood test tomorrow to find out why my legs keep collapsing. I dread another visit to Lab Corp!
Tags: company executives, General Labcorp Stories, glucose tolerance test, lab corp, labcorp, labcorp centers, LabCorp Complaints, LabCorp Employee Stories, LabCorp Employees, LabCorp Managers, LabCorp Mistakes, patient service, phlebotomists, wall street