Albumin is a protein made by the liver that plays a critical role in maintaining proper fluid balance in the body. The albumin test measures the level of albumin in the blood and is used to assess liver and kidney function, and to detect malnutrition and other conditions that affect the production or loss of protein in the body.
Pre-test preparation: No special preparation is needed for the albumin test.
Testing method: A blood sample is taken from a patient and sent to the laboratory for analysis. The sample is then analyzed to determine the level of albumin in the blood.
Common symptoms for prescribing this test: The albumin test is usually ordered when a patient has symptoms of liver or kidney disease, malnutrition or protein-losing conditions such as protein-losing enteropathy, nephrotic syndrome, or cirrhosis. The test is also used to monitor the treatment of these conditions.
Diagnosis: Low albumin levels can indicate liver or kidney disease, malnutrition or protein-losing conditions, but the diagnosis of these conditions is typically based on a combination of clinical, laboratory, and imaging findings.
Reference range: The reference range for albumin levels can vary depending on the lab, but generally, it is considered normal for adult to have albumin levels of 3.5-5.5 g/dL.
Normal values: The normal range for albumin levels can vary depending on the lab, but typically falls between 3.5-5.5 g/dL in adults.
It is important to note that low albumin levels do not confirm a diagnosis of liver or kidney disease, malnutrition or protein-losing conditions, and should be interpreted along with clinical presentation and other laboratory test results. Additionally, other factors such as age, sex, and certain medications can affect albumin levels, so the results should be considered in the context of the patient’s overall clinical picture. Additionally, Albumin levels can be affected by other factors such as dehydration, infection, surgery, and burns, so it is important to correlate the results with the clinical presentation.