Formal name: Creatinine

Serum creatinine is a form of test done to ascertain how well the kidney functions. Creatinine is a by product of waste that builds up in the blood from muscle usage.

How is it used?

An s-Creatinine test is a carried to evaluate the kidney’s health. Kidney functions as a waste (creatinine) removal 2that the body produces at a fixed rate daily. Determining the amount of creatinine present in the blood and comparing it with the standard amount would enhance your healthcare personnel to know how good your kidneys are.  Kidneys have nephrons which help to filter waste products present in the blood and they do this via a tiny cluster blood vessel called glomeruli. They filter impurities/toxins from the blood and store them in the bladder where they are being discharged through urination.

Creatinine is constantly eliminated from the body through the help of the kidney. When a high level of creatinine is discovered in the blood, it indicates that the kidney is damaged and not functioning properly.


4Why get tested?

This test is very important to determine the working condition of your kidneys; to detect any form of disease associated with the kidney and to monitor treatment stages if being treated for kidney disease. This test is also carried out to determine your overall health status.

When to go for a test?

If you experience symptoms of kidney disease such as swelling in your feet or ankles, dry/itchy skin, blood in your urine, painful urination, muscle cramps, frequent loss of appetite, high blood pressure or lower back pain near the kidneys.

 How do I prepare for a creatinine blood test?

Undergoing a creatinine test does not involve much preparation. Fasting is not paramount but prior to the test, you might be asked to refrain from eating cooked meat and taking some drugs that could increase the level of creatinine in your body thereby altering your test results.

Sample needed?

A blood sample would be obtained through your vein into a specimen tube or a urine sample within the range of 24-hours.

What do my test results mean?

The results obtained vary with gender, health history, age and the method through which the test is been carried out.5 Your result does not necessarily indicate you have kidney dysfunctions as your healthcare provider is the only one who could interpret the results for you.

The level of creatinine for a man tends to be of higher concentration than it is for a woman due to the muscle composition present in the body but found in lower concentration in children.

If you have a high concentration of creatinine, it could indicate the presence of muscle disease, kidney disease, dehydration, diabetes or shock. While a lower concentration might be as a result of muscle loss, protein deficiency in your diet or liver disease.

What else to know?

The s-Creatinine test is important to evaluate renal function because it entails several interesting properties. This test could sometimes be performed with other tests such as comprehensive metabolic panel (CMP), blood urea nitrogen (BUN) test or a basic metabolic panel (BMP) to check and correct problems associated with the kidney.



Formal name: Creatine Kinase-MB

What is CK-MB test?

2Creatine Kinase-MB is a type of test carried out on a blood sample to determine the level of an isoenzyme of Creatine kinase present in the blood. Creatine kinase (CK) test is conducted to ascertain the level of Myocardial infarction or injury in the body.

What does the test entail?

The body is made up of 3 types of Creatine kinase (CK) which are present in the muscles, heart, tissues and some organs like the brain, uterus and the intestines. CK-MB is released into the blood as a result of injured or damaged heart via the heart muscle cells. A creatine kinase-MB (CK-MB) test is used to determine whether the increasing concentration of creatine kinase (CK) in the blood is as a result of heart or muscle damage.  This test could be required by your healthcare provider if you experience symptoms such as dizziness, excessive fatigue, nausea, a discomfort in the chest, shortness of breath, dizziness and extreme tiredness.  This test is commonly employed to detect potential or existing diseases associated with the heart.

 Why go for CK-MB test?3

This test is crucial in determining or detecting the presence of a muscle damage and ill heart; sometimes to determine if you have once experienced a heart attack and also to monitor for subsequent heart damage. This test is required if you experience signs or symptoms of heart dysfunction.

When is it ordered?

CK-MB test is needed when one experience frequent chest pain due to a high concentration level of creatine kinase in the blood and your doctor wants to be sure whether it is as a result of skeletal or heart muscle damage.

How do I get prepared for the test?

There is no special preparation required for this test. Make sure you inform your doctor or healthcare practitioner about the kind of medications you are taking which also includes illegal drugs you might be using.

4Sample needed?

Your blood sample will be collected into a specimen tube using a sterile needle, adequately labeled and sent to the lab for proper examination.

 Are there risks associated with CK-MB test?

Having your blood sample collected with a sterile needle could result in a slight bleeding, bruise and make you feel a light sharp pain when the needle goes down your vein.

What does my test result mean?

The standard normal level of CK-MB in the blood is 5 – 25IU/L for both male and female regardless of age making it undetectable or of extremely low concentration in the blood. A high concentration level of creatine kinase in the blood could indicate you have once experienced a heart attack or heart-related issues. High concentration of CK-MB could also be caused by muscle damage or diseases that cause harm to your muscle thereby affecting your chest.  Kidney failure, some rare chronic muscle disease, alcohol abuse can also alter the CK-MB concentration level.

Is there anything else I am supposed to know?

Heart or skeletal muscle damage contributes majorly to a high CK-MB level.  Your healthcare provider could ask you to go for other tests like an electrocardiogram, or ECG, to determine the electrical activity in your heart.