Normal Protein Levels

Protein is one essential building block of cells in the body. It is also necessary for growth and development, and later in life, to maintain good health. Albumin and globulin are two proteins that specifically help your blood vessels and immune system: albumin keeps all the fluids in your blood vessels where they belong, and globulin helps boost your immune response. But how can you know that you have a normal protein level? Certain tests will give you a great deal of information on the proteins in your body.

What Are Normal Protein Levels in Blood?

When you take blood test, the results will tell you several things. The amounts of albumin in your blood will reveal whether you have a healthy diet, help determine the causes of swelling in various areas of your body, and let you know if your kidneys and liver are working properly. Testing on globulin levels will determine your chances of an infection, as well as spot any blood diseases you might have, such as multiple myeloma and related problems.

Total Protein Test

Also known as a total serum protein test, this blood test will help determine whether you have normal protein levels. It is done with a simple blood draw; the technician will use a tourniquet to slow the blood flow to your arm then will insert a needle into the vein. They will then fill up a tube of blood for testing. Some people say that the testing is uncomfortable, while others barely notice any discomfort at all. Either way, the test is over quickly. Your blood sample is then sent to a lab for analysis.

Normal Protein Level in Blood

When the report is ready, it will give you several numbers. It is important to note what the lab considered normal protein levels. There is a range of what is considered normal. Most labs will consider anything between 6.4 and 8.3 grams per deciliter (64-83 grams per liter) to be normal for a total protein count. However, normal range depends upon the lab, and could include numbers higher or lower than these. Here is a chart that reveals details of total protein test.

Abnormal Protein Level in Blood

What if you get results that fall outside the range of normal protein levels? There could be several reasons for this.

If you have higher than normal results, your doctor might suspect problems such as Waldenstrom disease, blood issues like multiple myeloma, and possibly an inflammation or infection, caused by diseases such as Hepatitis C, Hepatitis B, or HIV.

Results that are lower than normal might lead a doctor to suspect other problems, such as liver disease, an inability to absorb nutrients properly, malnutrition, nephrotic syndrome, agammaglobulinemia (lack of gamma globulin), and other issues that pertain to the proteins in the blood. You might also have lower results due to extensive burns or severe bleeding or hemorrhage.

What Are the Normal Protein Levels in Urine?

Protein levels are also frequently mentioned in urine test, which can be an indicator of the urination health. Tiny amounts of protein are typically in our urine; however, most tests will not detect these tiny amounts, as they cause no harm. However, some dipstick tests will spot kidney problems and other maladies that are indicated by higher or lower than normal protein levels. Some common issues, such as pregnancy, fever, and extensive exercise, can lead to more than normal protein in the urine.

Urine Test

This test is extremely simple. It requires a sample of urine in a cup, which is then tested by dipping a special 'stick' or paper tab into the urine. The test results are usually available within minutes and will tell you what your protein levels are. For a more extensive test, your doctor might ask you to collect your urine over a 24-hour period.

Normal values of protein in urine are typically between 0 and 20 mg/dL. For the 24-hour collection, anything below 80 mg/dL is considered normal. Again, remember that the range might vary, depending upon the laboratory used.

What Abnormal Results Mean

High amounts of protein in the urine might mean heart failure, kidney damage, severe dehydration, urinary tract infections or tumors, as well as problems with a current pregnancy, such as preeclampsia. A high urine protein result usually means that your doctor will go one step further and test your blood for normal protein levels.

Possible Treatment

If you have high protein levels in your urine, your doctor will search for the underlying cause in order to treat it promptly. Protein levels that are allowed to remain high over a long period of time could lead to kidney damage and other problems. Treatments depend upon the reason behind the high urine protein content. You might be prescribed certain medications, including those that control diabetes or high blood pressure. Other tests may also be performed to determine what the problem might be, and you could be referred to a kidney specialist who can get to the root of the issue.: 

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