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Boston Heart Diagnostics
Boston Heart Diagnostics
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About the Test

This is a single-marker test measuring iron. It can be ordered as part of a custom panel.

Ordering the Iron Test From Boston Heart Diagnostic

Iron is an essential nutrient required in small quantities to help form normal red blood cells. Iron is a critical part of the hemoglobin molecule, a protein that binds oxygen in the lungs and releases it as blood circulates through the body tissues.

Iron is incorporated from foods or supplements and is usually absorbed in the small intestine and transported throughout the body bound to transferrin, a protein produced by the liver. In healthy individuals, the iron transported is mainly incorporated into the production of hemoglobin. The remainder can be stored in the tissues as ferritin or hemosiderin.

If the iron level is insufficient to meet the body's needs, blood iron levels drop, and iron stores deplete. This may occur when there is an increased need for iron, for example, during pregnancy or childhood, due to chronic blood loss, when there is not enough iron consumed, or the body is unable to absorb iron from the foods eaten in conditions such as celiac disease.

Symptoms of Iron Deficiency

No physical effects are usually seen in the early stage of iron deficiency, as the iron stores are depleted. As the iron deficiency progresses, symptoms eventually begin to appear. The most common symptoms of anemia include:

  • Weakness
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Pale skin

Iron storage and ferritin levels increase when more iron is absorbed than the body needs. However, too much iron can be toxic to the body. Absorbing too much iron over time can lead to the progressive buildup of iron compounds in organs, causing their dysfunction and failure. For example, hemochromatosis is a condition in which the body absorbs and builds up too much iron, even on a normal diet.

Which Patients is the Iron Test from Boston Heart Diagnostic Best Used For?

A blood iron test evaluates the amount of iron in the body by measuring different substances in the blood. A physician may order a set of tests simultaneously, and the results are interpreted together to help diagnose or monitor iron deficiency or overload.

A physician may request the Iron test if an individual has the following:

  • Low hemoglobin levels
  • Low hematocrit on a complete blood count or
  • When there is suspicion that the patient has too little or too much iron in the body based on symptoms

*Note: Please be advised that Boston Heart Diagnostics policy states that practitioners are unable to order labs on themselves or their immediate family members.

About the Test

This is a single-marker test measuring iron. It can be used to assess various conditions related to red blood cell production and destruction, iron metabolism, or iron transport. Please be advised that Boston Heart Diagnostics policy states that practitioners cannot order labs on themselves or their immediate family members.

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Lab Test Information
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Sample Type
Shipping Time
1 - 7 days
Turnaround Time
14 days
Test Preparation Starts
No test preparation required
Number of Collection Days
1 day
Methods Used For Processing
Colorimetric Assay
Lab Certifications
CLIA Certified
CAP Accredited
ISO 15189
COLA Accredited
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