Bile Acids, Fractionated and Total Blood Test
The Bile Acids, Fractionated and Total Blood Test measures bile acid levels in the blood to help diagnose and monitor liver and gallbladder diseases.
What is the purpose of this test?
The Bile Acids, Fractionated, and Total Blood Test is a medical test that measures the levels of various bile acids present in the blood. Bile acids are synthesized in the liver and are essential for the proper digestion and absorption of fats in the small intestine. They also play a crucial role in eliminating cholesterol from the body.
The Bile Acids, Fractionated, and Total Blood Test is primarily used to diagnose and monitor liver and gallbladder diseases. Elevated levels of bile acids in the blood can indicate liver damage, cholestasis, hepatitis, or cirrhosis. The test can also help differentiate between intrahepatic and extrahepatic cholestasis. In addition, the test can assess the severity of liver disease and predict the prognosis.
The Bile Acids, Fractionated, and Total Blood Test is also valuable in monitoring the effectiveness of treatments for liver and gallbladder conditions. For example, patients with cholestasis may undergo treatment with medications such as ursodeoxycholic acid, which can reduce the levels of bile acids in the blood. Regular monitoring of bile acid levels can help healthcare providers determine if the treatment is working or if an alternative treatment needs to be considered.
The Bile Acids, Fractionated, and Total Blood Test is a critical diagnostic and monitoring tool for liver and gallbladder diseases. By detecting and monitoring these conditions early on, patients can receive prompt and appropriate treatment, leading to better outcomes and improved quality of life.
What conditions cause high bile acid levels?
Several medical conditions can cause high bile acid levels in the body. These include:
- Liver diseases (hepatitis, cirrhosis, and biliary obstruction)
- Hormonal imbalances
- Certain medications
- Genetic disorders
It's important to consult with a healthcare provider for proper diagnosis and treatment.
When should I order a Bile Acids, Fractionated and Total Blood Test?
Individuals may order this test if they have experienced symptoms related to liver and gallbladder diseases. Common signs and symptoms of liver and gallbladder diseases include:
- Abdominal pain and swelling
- Jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes)
- Itchy skin
- Dark urine color
- Pale stool color
- Nausea and vomiting
- Fatigue and weakness
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
- Fever and chills (if infection is present)
- Confusion and forgetfulness (if liver disease is severe)
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