Why A Glomerular Filtration Test Is Performed

download (38)The kidney is one of the most vital organs, failure of which can cause a significant threat to an individual’s life. If you face symptoms of kidney disease, immediately visit a doctor and get necessary tests done. Of the many tests performed to study the proper functionality of kidneys, a GFR test is the best and most accurate one. It helps measure the amount of creatinine present in the blood, a breakdown product which is filtered out by the kidneys. The test is also utilized to analyze the stage of kidney damage. The higher the presence of creatinine, the higher is the stage of the disease.

How is the test performed?

A sample of blood is needed to carry out the GFR test. As mentioned above, the blood tests for the level of creatinine along with several other factors to estimate the glomerular filtration rate. Different formulas are used for analyzing the condition in children and adult. The formula includes the following:-

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Height
  • Weight
  • Ethnicity
  • Blood creatinine measurement

Test Preparations

It is quite possible that your doctor may ask you to stop your regular medications for they can affect the test results. These medications include stomach acid medicines and antibodies. Do not discontinue your medications without talking to your doctor. Also, inform the doctor if you are pregnant as the test result is affected by pregnancy.

Normal Test results

As per the National Kidney Foundation, normal test results typically range between 90 to 120mL/min/1.73 m2. Aged individuals can have lower than normal GFR levels because it decreases with progressing age.

Abnormal Test Results

A level below 60 mL/min/1.73 m2 for consecutive three months or more are a sign of fatal kidney disease. On the other hand, a GFR less than 15 mL/min/1.73 m2 is considered a sign of kidney failure and must be treated immediately.

How will the test feel?

Arteries and veins differ in size from one person to the other and from one side of the body to the other. Obtaining a sample of blood can be normal for some but painful for many. The prick can feel a bit stingy. Once the blood is drawn, there might be a slight bruise which soon disappears. The test does not pose any health risks as such if performed using sanitized needle and new injections.

Alternative Risk Factors

There are many other reasons why you may develop a kidney disease. Some of them are as follows:

  • Diabetes
  • Family history of kidney diseases
  • Heart disease
  • Frequent urine tract infections
  • High blood pressure
  • Urinary blockage

The author is a health blogger who loves to write on topics related to kidneys such as risk factors, GFR test, various therapies, and treatments. She has been associated with one of the digital marketing companies of India and works as a Sr. Content Executive.