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Bilirubin Blood Test
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A bilirubin blood test is a common test used to measure the amount of bilirubin in your blood. Bilirubin is a yellow-coloured pigment that is produced when red blood cells break down. High levels of bilirubin can indicate a number of different health conditions, such as jaundice, hepatitis, and cirrhosis.
- Bilirubin Levels
- Alanine transferase (ALT)
- Gamma-glutamyltransferase (GGT)
- Total Protein
- Alkaline phosphatase (ALP)
- Aspartate aminotransferase (AST)
Who is this for?
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Bilirubin is produced from the breakdown of haemoglobin, a protein that is present in red blood cells. Bilirubin is processed in the liver, and then often stored in the gallbladder after processing. Following this, it is released in the bile.
The albumin protein is responsible for healthy body tissue and transporting hormones, drugs and vitamins as well as other essential substances around the blood. The levels of albumin can be checked by a blood test with normal results ranging from 3.5 to 5 g/dL. The test provides insight into how many hormones are available to the tissue and if a change in diet or an added supplement is required for the individual.
Alanine transferase (ALT)
Alanine transferase (ALT) is an enzyme produced in the heart and liver cells. The testing of ALT will detect how much ALT is in the bloodstream but cannot show how much damage has been caused to the liver. The test is important to determine the health of the liver especially if drugs, heavy alcohol use or viruses (hepatitis) have been present. Lower ALT results have mostly indicated a healthy liver but healthy ALT ranges will depend on many factors, such as age and sex.
The gamma-glutamyl transferase (GGT) test is undertaken to measure the amount of the GGT enzyme in the blood. GGT's function in the body is to transport molecules and aid the metabolisation of toxins and drugs within the liver. A high GGT reading can be due to liver damage or disease, these may include hepatitis or cirrhosis. Testing Gamma GT is also important for bile duct infection and monitoring alcohol abuse.
A total protein test measures the levels of all the proteins in your blood. The two proteins albumin and globulin have many important functions in the body and are primarily responsible for fighting infection, carrying nutrients and ensuring proper transport within blood vessels. The normal protein level in the blood is between 6 to 8g/dL. If you have low levels of total proteins in the blood it could be an indication of liver damage or malnutrition.
A globulin test may be able to identify a liver infection. The globulin levels within the blood can be checked through a blood test with the normal result ranging between 2.3 to 4.5 g/dL. The globulin is a group of proteins produced in the liver that are responsible for fighting off infections, healthy liver function, blood clotting and metal transportation. The resulting treatment for high globulin levels are based on the underlying cause. If an infection has caused a high globulin count then the treatment will focus on the infection. If inflammation has occurred, a medication or lifestyle change may be required.
Alkaline phosphatase (ALP)
Found mostly in the liver and bones, alkaline phosphatase (ALP) is a blood enzyme that breaks down proteins. The ALP is tested to determine if there are high ALP levels which may be a sign of liver, gallbladder or bone disease. If there are low levels of ALP detected in the blood, it may be due to malnutrition or protein deficiency, possible due to celiac disease. The results of an ALP test will vary depending on your age, blood type, sex and if you are pregnant.
Aspartate aminotransferase (AST)
An Aspartate aminotransferase (AST) test is done to ensure an average amount of the enzyme is present within the blood. The enzyme is usually found within the liver, muscles and heart as well as other tissues around the body. When AST levels have increased it means there has been damage to the nearby tissues and cells. The AST is an enzyme that helps to trigger important chemical reactions within the body.
High Bilirubin levels will often manifest as a sign of acute liver disease
Symptoms of acute liver disease may include: Loss of appetite Swelling in your stomach Dark urine Light-coloured stool Nausea Weakness Chronic fatigue Yellowish eyes or skin (jaundice)
Additional Insight from Dr Sameer Nakedar, MBBS, MRCGP, PGCert
Bilirubin is often part of a liver function test and can be used as a marker for the presence of jaundice. Jaundice can be a sign of many things, sometimes it could be a disease, damage to the liver or a genetic disease.
Why take a Bilirubin Blood Test?
Bilirubin Blood Tests are carried out to check the healthy function of the liver and bile duct. Bilirubin is a potentially toxic waste product, with the body developing complex system to safely regulate its levels and remove excess levels via the liver.
"This test can be used either to investigate jaundice or as a general monitoring exercise. It can also be important in detecting some cancers, including pancreatic cancer, where it may show up as painless jaundice, often presenting with no symptoms but very high bilirubin levels."
How to take a Bilirubin Blood Test Test
Collecting a blood sample for your finger prick home test is straightforward. Watch the video below for more details on how to take a home blood test.
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Activate your test and collect your sample in the morning. Return your sample on the same day, using the prepaid shipping label provided. Samples use a simple finger prick collection method that takes around 5 minutes to complete.
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Bilirubin Blood Test Information
Specification of Bilirubin Blood Test
- Test name: Bilirubin Blood Test
- Also known as & related tests: Bilirubin
- Test tube: SST (Gold microtainer)
- Brand: Welzo
- Turn around time: Approx. 24 hours
- Lab test ranges:
- Test Kit Marking: MHRA/UKCA
- Location of Lab: United Kingdom
What is a Bilirubin Blood Test?
A Bilirubin Blood Test is a home health test offered by Welzo. The Bilirubin Blood Test can be taken from the comfort of your home using a finger prick sample, which is then sent back to our lab for analysis and interpretation.
What does a Bilirubin Blood Test for?
A Bilirubin Blood Test tests for the following:.
What are the benefits of a Bilirubin Blood Test?
Checking your health through the use of Bilirubin Blood Test is an important way to track your health. Home testing offers the convenience of conducting health assessments in the comfort of your own home, while enabling quicker, more private results without the need for visiting a healthcare facility.
Can a GP review my Bilirubin Blood Test?
Yes, Welzo offers a GP review service for the Bilirubin Blood Test. Follow the link if you would like to have an online GP appointment with your Bilirubin Blood Test.
Are Bilirubin Blood Tests available on the NHS?
The NHS offers Bilirubin Blood Tests subject to eligibility requirements, consultations and local guidelines.
Bilirubin Blood Test Kit and Ordering
How can a Bilirubin Blood Test be ordered?
A Bilirubin Blood Test can be ordered online through Welzo's secure checkout. Select the Bilirubin Blood Test and add the patient's name and details, then checkout for next-day delivery.
What is included in the Bilirubin Blood Test test kit?
The Bilirubin Blood Test contains the following items in the test kit:
- 1 x UN3373 Test Kit for Biological Substances Category B (test kit design may vary from images displayed online depending on the test selected.
- 1 x Free Return Label
- 1 x Finger Prick Lancet / Urine Sample Pouch or Swab (depending on the test ordered)
- 1 x Cleansing Wipe/ Alcohol Swab
- SST (Gold microtainer)
Bilirubin Blood Test Biomarkers and Results
What biomarkers are tested for in a Bilirubin Blood Test?
The Bilirubin Blood Test checks for the following biomarkers:
What are the results ranges for a Bilirubin Blood Test?
Bilirubin Blood Test reference ranges vary based on age, sex, population sample and numeric test result ranges. However, once you complete your tests, you will receive clear reference ranges for your Bilirubin Blood Test.
What is a normal test range for Bilirubin Blood Test?
The Bilirubin Blood Test range will be provided on the advanced Welzo reporting panel which will factor in multiple aspects such as age, population size comparison and biological sex.
Bilirubin Blood Test Procedure and Timing
When should a Bilirubin Blood Test be taken?
It is best to take a Bilirubin Blood Test first thing in the morning.
How long does a Bilirubin Blood Test take?
The typical turnaround for a Bilirubin Blood Test is 24 hours from receipt at the Welzo laboratory, Monday to Thursday. However, results may come back faster or slower depending on how busy the Welzo laboratory is and if you have requested any biomarkers that take longer to test for. In this case, results can take up to 5 days.
Are there any special preparations required before taking the Bilirubin Blood Test (e.g., fasting)?
We will let you know via email if there are any special requirements for the Bilirubin Blood Test. However, typically we recommend you take a Bilirubin Blood Test first thing in the morning, fasted.
What is the best time to post my Bilirubin Blood Test?
The best time to return your Bilirubin Blood Test sample is Monday to Thursday, before 14:00 to ensure the product arrives at our lab on time for same-day analysis.
What sample is required for a Bilirubin Blood Test?
The Bilirubin Blood Test requires a capillary blood sample using a SST (Gold microtainer) that is collected from a finger-prick blood sample.
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