The uric acid blood test is a test that measures the actual level of uric acid is the blood. Uric acid is a product obtained from the break down of purine nucleotides. This acid is normally excreted via kidneys and with only a small amount excreted with feces. In case kidneys do not function properly they may not eliminate the optimal amount of uric acid from the body. This results in elevation of uric acid blood levels.
If a person suffers from high levels of uric acid he/ she is prone to a medical condition called gout. Namely, in gout uric acid (in a form of solid crystals) accumulates in the joints (and sometimes surrounding tissues). The condition is the cause of pain, swelling and tenderness of the affected joints. People suffering from gout also have to deal with one more form of uric acid deposits called tophi. Furthermore, elevation of uric acid in the blood is associated with formation of kidney stones and subsequent kidney failure.
Uric Acid Test
The uric acid test is a very convenient and easy way of measuring the level of uric acid in the blood. It is a good way of diagnosing gout. Furthermore, the test can be of major help in establishing whether the kidney stones are caused by high uric acid levels. And one more benefit from uric acid test is to investigate whether the medications prescribed to people suffering from gout are effective.
The test can also be used for people who undergo chemotherapy and radiation therapy. In this case the destruction of cancer cells leads to an increase in the level of uric acid, which can be confirmed and monitored with the uric acid test.
Uric acid crystallizes if its level exceeds 6.8 mg/dL (0.40 mmol/L). This is why everything above the mentioned digit is considered dangerous. In people who are already diagnosed with gout the goal is to maintain the optimal level of uric acid which is in this case 6mg/L (0.35mmol/L). Everything below 6 mg/L is considered safe.
Uric Acid Test Kits
Uric acid meters are available in markets. They are easy to use and can help a person in monitoring of uric acid levels. Even the slightest change can be detected. This way a patient may have insight in uric acid levels and inform a doctor in case of any change (especially increase in level of uric acid). There are no particular preparations prior testing. One should, however, be familiar with the fact that certain medications may interfere in results. A person is due to follow instruction of the test and he/ she will obtain relevant results.