Calcitonin Blood Test
What is Calcitonin Blood Test?
- Calcitonin Blood Test measures the level of hormone calcitonin in the blood
- The hormone calcitonin is secreted by the thyroid gland, an endocrine gland (a hormone-secreting gland) located in the area of the throat, against the windpipe. Special cells, called C-cells present in the thyroid gland, secrete calcitonin
- Calcitonin Blood Test is mainly used to screen, diagnose, monitor, and evaluate the response to treatment for medullary thyroid cancer (a highly cancerous, spreading form of thyroid cancer)
- The normal levels of calcitonin are less than 10 pg/mL (picogram per milliliter)
Why do I need this test?
You may need this test if you have symptoms of medullary thyroid cancer. These include a lump or swelling in your neck.
If you've been diagnosed with thyroid cancer, your healthcare provider can use this test to see how well cancer treatment is working. He or she may also use this test to check if the cancer has come back.
This test is also used as a screening test for people with a family history of medullary thyroid cancer. Screening lets you know more about your risk of developing the cancer. It lets you know whether you should take additional steps. The earlier cancer is found, the better your chances of survival.
You also might have this test if your provider thinks you have C-cell hyperplasia. This is a benign thyroid disease that runs in families.
Other conditions can cause higher levels of calcitonin. These include:
Taking certain medicines, including oral contraceptives, epinephrine, glucagon, and calcium
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