Folate (Folic Acid) Serum Test
The Folate Serum Test measures folate levels in the blood to screen for a deficiency.
What is the purpose of this test?
Order this Folate Serum Test, which measures folate levels in the blood to screen for a deficiency. Folate, which is also referred to as folic acid or vitamin B9, has many crucial functions in the body, such as aiding in the creation of DNA, which is responsible for your distinct genetic makeup. Folate testing is done to check for low levels of the nutrient. It may be ordered to follow up on an abnormal blood test or if symptoms could be caused by a folate deficiency.
Folate is found naturally in certain foods like:
- Leafy greens
- Citrus fruits
- It's also added to many foods in the form of folic acid
Folate deficiency is uncommon in healthy individuals who consume a balanced diet, and an excess of the vitamin is excreted from the body through urine because it is water-soluble.
Low folate or vitamin B12 levels can lead to megaloblastic anemia, a condition where the body has insufficient red blood cells. Folates are monitored during treatment to ensure that levels have returned to normal. Those with inflammatory bowel disease may require routine folate testing due to the digestive system's poor absorption of nutrients and medications that may impair folate absorption. Symptoms of other health issues, such as anemia, may also necessitate such testing.
When should I order a Folate Serum Test?
Individuals may order this test if they have experienced symptoms related to folate deficiency. Common signs or symptoms of folate deficiency include:
- Weakness and fatigue
- Shortness of breath
- Abnormal heartbeat
- Open sores on the tongue or inside the mouth
- Change of hair or skin color
- Difficulty concentrating
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