C-Reactive Protein CRP Test: What It Is, Purpose & Results

People with high CRP may benefit from aspirin therapy more than people with normal CRP levels. For example, it might be useful for people with elevated CRP levels who are at a higher risk of heart disease or who have already had a cardiac event. The follow-up of a CRP test can vary based on your diagnosis. Your healthcare provider will consider your CRP results along with your symptoms and medical history, a physical exam, and other lab tests and procedures. Doctors will use the hs-CRP test to evaluate a healthy person’s risk of developing cardiovascular disease and other heart conditions. Research shows that only 50% of people who suffered heart attacks had high LDL levels.
The healthcare professional then inserts a small needle into the vein and collects your blood in a sterile vial. A family history of heart disease can also put you at a higher risk of heart disease. Elevated levels of CRP may have an important role in identifying people who might need closer follow-up or more intensive treatment after heart attacks or heart procedures. It’s important to note that ahigh-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) test is a slightly different test than a regular C-reaction protein test.

  • High levels of CRP may mean you have a serious health condition that causes inflammation.
  • The hs-CRP test can help show the risk of getting coronary artery disease.
  • The American College of Cardiology and American Heart Association consider a level of 2 mg/L and above to be a possible risk factor for heart attacks.
  • Antigen/antibody tests can detect HIV antigens or antibodies in about half of the people who have acquired HIV after 18 days following exposure.
  • To take a sample of your blood, a health care provider places a needle into a vein in your arm, usually at the bend of the elbow.

This test is done via a blood sample, so there will be a small needle involved. A doctor may order a C-reaction protein test if they suspect you have an inflammatory disorder, such as arthritis. Your doctor may also use this test to monitor treatment if you’ve been diagnosed with an inflammatory disorder. Our information is intended to support, rather than replace, consultation with a healthcare professional.

How Long Levels Stay High

The liver makes C-reactive protein (CRP) in response to inflammation in the body. High levels of CRP can indicate inflammation due to an acute or chronic condition. If you have an abnormal result, your healthcare provider will discuss your results with you. They may order additional tests to determine the cause of your abnormal CRP levels. If you have a moderately to severely elevated CRP level, it probably means you have some type of inflammation. But a CRP test can’t show the cause of the inflammation or where it is in your body.

what is reactive testing

Antibody tests are a little more simple, detecting antibodies that the body produces in response to HIV. Antigens are substances from outside the body that prompt the immune system to act. The antigens alert the immune system to produce antibodies, specialized proteins that attack foreign invaders and keep the body safe from infections. Nucleic acid tests are another type of HIV test that detects the virus in the blood. However, these tests are expensive, so healthcare staff do not often use them for routine screening. Early treatment with antiretroviral drugs can reduce a person’s risk of serious AIDS-related events by 72% and the likelihood of serious non-AIDS events by 39%.
During the procedure, a technician — usually a phlebotomist — will wrap a rubber band around the person’s arm, just above their elbow. Next, they may tap on the veins or ask a person to make a fist to make the veins more visible. They will then puncture a vein with a small needle and allow blood to flow into a test tube. A doctor may recommend a CRP test based on a person’s other symptoms or as a follow-up to other blood work.

High-sensitivity C-reactive Protein Test Results

Studies have shown that they can reduce CRP levels by 13% to 50%. Statins can also greatly reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke in people with high CRP levels who do not have any other signs or symptoms. However, other blood tests may be performed at the same time that do, such as a fasting cholesterol test.
what is reactive testing
Although there are limitations to what the CRP test can reveal, it is a relatively reliable way to measure inflammation. The higher the CRP levels, the greater amount of inflammation in the body. This is most common when there is a temporary elevation because of pregnancy, a mild infection, or a physical injury.
Very high CRP levels may signal a medical emergency, and a person may need prompt care in the hospital. Significantly elevated CRP levels tend to occur with severe infections, such as bacterial or fungal infections. Bacterial infection is responsible for about 90% of the cases involving CRP levels higher than 50 mg/l.

The CRP test is often performed with another blood test called the erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR). Both are non-specific markers for inflammation but, together, can offer important clues as to what is going on in the body. In some cases, a CRP test can be the deciding fact even if levels are only mildly elevated. Below are some commonly asked questions on C reactive protein levels. They may also wish to repeat the test to see how CRP levels change over time before they make a diagnosis. People with very high CRP levels often have an acute infection.

If you have been tested for HIV infection, you may be told that the result is ‘reactive’. While this is sometimes described as a ‘positive’ result, it could be a false positive. The result indicates that the test has reacted to something in your blood and this should be investigated further. Rapid tests can detect HIV infection in around half of the people who have contracted HIV by day 22 following exposure. When hs-CRP is evaluated, it has been recommended to have the test repeated to confirm that you have persistent inflammation. Currently, there is no consensus on when to get tested, though some guidelines include recommendations on hs-CRP testing.
A C-reactive protein (CRP) test measures the level of C-reactive protein — a protein made by your liver — in your blood. Hs-CRP level is only one risk factor for coronary artery disease. Having a high hs-CRP level doesn’t always mean a higher risk of developing heart disease. A high level of hs-CRP in the blood has been linked to an increased risk of heart attacks.
what is reactive testing
A study of 376 people found that 210 of them diagnosed with CAD had elevated CRP levels when compared with 166 people who did not have CAD. The CRP level increased in step with the degree of blood vessel damage as seen on an imaging test used to visualize blood flow through the heart (coronary angiography). In most healthy adults, the normal CRP range is 0.3 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) or less. Most providers will consider a CRP level that’s higher than 10 mg/L to be abnormal. You may experience bruising, swelling, or a hematoma (a pooling of blood under the skin) after the blood draw.

Because of this, your healthcare provider will likely order additional tests if your result shows a high CRP level. After a healthcare provider has collected your blood sample, they’ll send it to a laboratory for testing. Once the test results are back, your healthcare provider will share the results with you. A healthcare provider called a phlebotomist usually performs blood draws, but any healthcare provider who is trained in drawing blood can perform this task.
what is reactive testing
You may be instructed to keep this in place for an hour or more to prevent bruising. If you feel or have a history of lightheadedness, fainting, or nausea, inform the phlebotomist before the procedure. You may be asked to stay seated briefly to monitor you and https://www.globalcloudteam.com/ ensure you are able to safely walk or drive. Venipuncture is minimally invasive and carries very few risks. Some people complain of soreness, bleeding, or bruising after the test. You can apply an ice pack to the puncture wound to help relieve these symptoms.

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