With a prick of blood, a number of tests promise to deliver consumers medical information, NPR reports, adding, however, that the tests might not be all that accurate.
DIY medical kits that can be used in your own bathroom and range in cost from $35 to $450, depending on the number of tests included, it adds. Some test food allergies, while others test for STDs. One company, EverlyWell, NPR notes, got its start on the reality TV show Shark Tank, and doctors say that it is promising more than can be delivered.
For instance, it says that the company's best-selling test for food sensitivities— which some customers swear by — relies on immunoglobulin G testing, but the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology notes that such testing has never been proven to work.
Instead, NPR says, some doctors suggest that customers could feel better after testing due to the placebo effect. At the same time, some are also concerned that testing could cause harm or unnecessary tests or treatments, depending on people react to their results.