The purpose of MyLabResults.org is to provide a visual graphic to help patients better understand the numbers that are given in these tables. Most hospitals and health systems that give patients their test results online use a table format. This website is meant to demonstrate how a test result could instead be shown in a more intuitively meaningful visual graphic. We hope that it helps you to understand your own test values.
However, we must be clear that MyLabResults.org is a research demonstration site, NOT a certified laboratory or source of verified medical information. All information provided by MyLabResults.org, including the standard ranges, categories, and labels used in the displays, should NOT be taken as medical advice or verified medical data of any kind. The categories and numbers used in these graphics have only been reviewed by a few doctors and cannot be interpreted to represent the consensus judgment of the medical community. If you have questions about your health or your test lab value, please contact your health provider. Only your health provider can help you understand your own health care situation.
MyLabResults.org is a project of Brian J. Zikmund-Fisher, PhD, a decision psychologist and public health communications researcher who holds appointments as an Associate Professor of Health Behavior and Health Education and Research Associate Professor of Internal Medicine at the University of Michigan. Dr. Zikmund-Fisher is also an Associate Director at the UM Center for Bioethics and Social Sciences in Medicine (CBSSM). Funding to support its creation was provided by an award (R01 HS021681) from the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). The research team included:
- Brian Zikmund-Fisher (Principle Investigator)
- Angela Fagerlin
- Aaron Scherer
- Jacob Solomon
- Holly Witteman
- Nicole Exe
- Mark Dickson
- Beth Tarini
- Sandeep Vijan
- Reshma Jagsi
- Kenneth Langa
In particular, Mark Dickson and Jacob Solomon led the design, programming, and user testing of the MyLabResults.org website.
The development process included a combination of in-person interviews and online surveys to find the visual graphics that best helped people to understand their test results. While there are many ways that one could visually present laboratory test results, the graphics that you will find on this website are what helped people in our studies to best understand what test results meant for their health.
For further information about our research, please see the following research papers:
- Zikmund-Fisher BJ, Scherer AM, Witteman HO, Solomon J, Exe NL, Tarini BA, Fagerlin A. Graphics help patients distinguish between urgent and non-urgent deviations in laboratory test results. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association 2017;24(3):520-528. doi:10.1093/jamia/ocw169
- Solomon J, Scherer AM, Exe NL, Witteman HO, Fagerlin A, Zikmund-Fisher BJ. Is This Good or Bad?: Redesigning Visual Displays of Medical Test Results in Patient Portals to Provide Context and Meaning. Proceedings of the 2016 CHI Conference Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems. doi:10.1145/2851581.2892523