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Study: Theranos Isn’t as Reliable as Conventional Labs

Comparing the controversial startup's results with those from two well-known commercial labs.

Gilbert Carrasquillo / Getty

Theranos is more likely than conventional labs to return blood work with unusual numbers, according to the first comparison study between the Silicon Valley startup and two well-known commercial labs. The results suggest that doctors who use blood tests from Theranos may decide to treat patients for conditions they don’t have — or fail to treat patients who need their help.

Theranos’ results were compared to those from LabCorp and Quest Diagnostics in the report from Mount Sinai, which was published in the Journal of Clinical Investigations. For multiple tests, Theranos’ results were more likely to fall outside the range that’s considered normal for a healthy adult compared with results from the other companies.

In addition, Theranos’ results from certain tests often didn’t match up to those from Quest Diagnostics and LabCorp.

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