Uric Acid Blood Test
The Uric Acid Blood Test measures uric acid levels in the blood and helps screen for gout or kidney stone formation.
What is the purpose of this test?
Order this Uric Acid Blood Test to measure uric acid levels in the blood and helps screen for gout or kidney stone formation. Uric acid is a chemical created due to the breakdown of purines in the body. Purines are nitrogen-containing substances found in the body's cells. Purines may also be found in certain foods, including liver, anchovies, sardines, dried beans, and beer. As old cells break down, they release purines into the blood.
This Uric Acid Blood test measures uric acid levels, which is a byproduct of the breakdown. The kidneys remove most uric acid from the body and release it in the urine, with the remainder expelled in the stool. However, if excess uric acid remains in the body, it can combine with chemicals to form gout or kidney stones.
Individuals may order this Uric Acid Blood Test to help:
- Diagnose gout
- Determine the cause of recurring kidney stones (hyperoxaluria)
- Monitor the uric acid level of people undergoing certain cancer treatments.
What conditions are associated with abnormal uric acid levels?
Abnormally high uric acid levels can cause the formation of crystal-like substances in the joints, also known as gout. Gout, a condition characterized by painful inflammation and swelling in and around the joints, is a common form of arthritis. Excess uric acid levels can also lead to other health conditions, including kidney stones or kidney failure. Kidney stones are hardened concentrations of chemicals that can accumulate in the urinary tract. These stones are characterized by severe pain in the abdomen, back, side, or groin. Although these stones initially form in the kidney, they can also develop in other parts of the urinary tract, like the bladder or the ureters.
Other conditions that cause abnormal uric acid levels may include the following:
- Alcohol disorder
- Overweight or obese
- Tumor lysis syndrome
- Chemotherapy and radiation therapy
When should I order a Uric Acid Blood Test?
Individuals may order this Uric Acid Blood Test if they have experienced recurring gout symptoms or kidney stones. Individuals may also order this test to screen for a rare genetic hyperoxaluria condition, assess kidney stones' severity, and help develop a treatment plan.
Common signs or symptoms of gout may include:
- Pain or swelling in the joints, specifically in the toes, ankles, or knees
- Redness, tenderness, or warm feeling around the joints
Common signs or symptoms of a kidney stone may include:
- Severe pain in the abdomen, back, side, or groin
- Blood in the urine
- Grainy or darkened urine
- Abnormal changes to the color or smell of the urine
- Difficulty urinating
- Nausea and vomiting
- Chills or fever
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