If you see that your doctor has ordered a T Prot blood test, then this means they are wanting to know what the total protein levels are in your blood. This is a common blood test that is often ordered as part of the routine health screening process. It will help to measure the amount of albumin and globulin that are currently in your body.
A medical provider may also order the T Prot blood test if an individual is showing the signs and symptoms of kidney disease or liver disease. This includes unexpected weight loss, ongoing fatigue even with a good night of rest, extra fluid in body tissues, especially the hands and feet, as well as other bothersome signs and symptoms that develop over time.
What Are Albumin and Globulin? Why Do They Need To Be Tested?
Proteins are one of the most important components of the human body. They are the building blocks that help to form all tissues and cells. They are necessary for the body to develop, to grow, and are required for good health because a number of other hormones and other items needed will bind, or attach, themselves to proteins for transport throughout the body.
There are several types of proteins throughout the body, but the two found in the blood are albumin and globulin. When testing for albumin levels, then a doctor can know that a patient has enough of this protein that prevents fluid from leaking out of blood vessels as the heart pumps it around the circulatory system. As for globulin, it helps to keep a patient’s immune system operating as it should.
What Do the T Prot Blood Test Results Mean?
The results of the T Prot blood test are often considered in combination of other tests that are ordered with a comprehensive metabolic panel to determine what is going on. In general terms, however, having low or high protein levels may indicate a number of issues.
- A low T Prot result can suggest a liver or kidney disorder. It may also indicate that proteins are not being digested properly by the body. Low levels have also been seen in severe cases of malnutrition and individuals with an inflammatory bowel disease or celiac disease may also have low levels.
- A high T Prot result is often seen when someone is suffering from a chronic inflammation issue. Certain bone marrow disorders, such as multiple myeloma, have also been known to increase protein levels.
As part of the T Prot blood test, the albumin and globulin levels will also be given in a ratio result, called the A/G Ratio. This is determined by taking total protein levels, measured albumin, and calculated globulin. A low ratio is often an indication that there is an autoimmune issue that is affecting patient health. Low ratios are also commonly seen in patients suffering from cirrhosis of the liver.
High ratios are an indication of a genetic deficiency. Certain leukemias have also been known to produce a high A/G ratio.
Here’s What You Need To Know
There are a number of medications that can cause the total protein levels in the body to be affected. If you are using corticosteroids, androgens, dextran, insulin, HGH, estrogen, birth control pills, or consume high levels of caffeinated products, you will want to speak to your doctor about your lifestyle choices. The T Prot blood test may be delayed or the results interpreted a different way depending on your current medical situation.
It is not uncommon for follow-up testing to occur after a T Prot blood test where abnormal results were found. The additional tests are ordered to confirm the initial health concern that has been found by protein levels. This may include liver enzyme tests, celiac disease testing, IBD testing, or kidney health testing so an accurate diagnosis can be obtained.
If high protein levels are discovered, a re-test might also be ordered by a medical provider. When there is a prolonged application of a tourniquet during the blood collection process for this test, it can result in protein counts that are higher than the actual concentration that is in the blood.
The T Prot blood test will be normal for the vast majority of patients who have it ordered for them. Follow up with your medical provider about any test results that may have you feeling concerned so that a treatment plan, if necessary, can be created to address your issues. Only a doctor can interpret what your results mean for your medical history.