About The Test
What is Serum Albumin?
Albumin is a protein produced by liver in the body and its function is to carry nutrients to the body and keep body fluids from leaking into the body. A serum albumin test checks the amount of albumin in the body. Any abnormality in the level of albumin indicate a likelihood of liver disease, kidney disease or nutritional deficiency. This test is recommended in case of symptoms including jaundice, fatigue, sudden weight loss, troubled urination or swelling of feet and legs.
Value lower than normal indicate the possibility of liver disease, crohn disease, nephrotic syndrome, celiac disease or malnutrition. Higher levels of albumin than normal might be caused due to rigorous physical activity, taking excess protein in diet and dehydration.
Why is Serum Albumin done?
The serum albumin test is done:
As a part of the routine check-up
In case of symptoms of liver disorder
In case of symptoms of kidney disease
Prior to planned surgery
In the case of malnutrition
In the case of unintended weight loss
What does Serum Albumin Measure?
The serum albumin test measures the levels of albumin present in the blood. Albumin is a protein which is made by the liver. This protein makes up about 60% of the total protein in the blood and has various functions.
The role of albumin is to keep fluid from leaking out of blood vessels and give nourishment to tissues. It also helps in the transportation of hormones, vitamins, calcium, and other substances throughout the body. The levels of albumin protein may decrease if there is any interference in its production from the liver. These decreased levels can be due to other reasons such as increase in the breakdown of proteins, increase in loss of proteins via the kidneys, and in case there is blood dilution (expansion of plasma volume).
The main causes of low albumin protein include severe liver disease and kidney disease.