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Lab Test

Folate (Folic Acid) Test

Folate, also known as folic acid or vitamin B9, is a nutrient that is essential for the normal functioning of the body. It plays a crucial role in creating new cells, including red blood cells, synthesizing DNA, and aiding in the metabolism of proteins. A deficiency or excess of folate can lead to various health issues, which makes it necessary to monitor its levels in the body.

  • Test NameFolate (Folic Acid) Test
  • Sample TypeBlood
  • Preparations RequiredNo specific preparation is required for this test. You can maintain your normal diet and lifestyle unless your doctor suggests otherwise.
  • Report Time4 hours

A folate test measures the amount of folate in the blood to detect deficiencies and help diagnose certain types of anemia. This test can also be important for pregnant women, as adequate levels of folate are required for the proper development of the baby's neural tube. Additionally, the test can be used to monitor the health status of individuals who have conditions that can affect folate absorption, such as celiac disease or alcoholism.

Home Sample Collection Process

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Sample Collection by Phlebotomist
Sample Collection by Phlebotomist
Reporting of the sample at lab
Reporting of the sample at lab
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Download Reports
Frequently Asked Questions

This test is important as it helps in diagnosing folate deficiency, which can lead to megaloblastic anemia, a condition where the body produces unusually large, immature red blood cells. Also, it's vital for pregnant women as folate deficiency can lead to neural tube defects in the unborn child.

No, fasting is not usually required before taking this test. You can continue your normal diet unless your doctor advises otherwise.

No special preparation is needed for this test. The healthcare professional will collect a blood sample from a vein in your arm.

This test is typically ordered when a person exhibits symptoms of a folate deficiency or megaloblastic anemia, such as weakness, fatigue, pale skin, and persistent mouth ulcers. It is also done during pregnancy or when planning for pregnancy to ensure adequate folate levels.

This test measures the level of folate, also known as folic acid or vitamin B9, in the blood.

The frequency of this test depends on various factors such as your health status, ongoing treatment, and if you are pregnant. Your doctor will provide guidance based on your specific situation.

Normal folate levels usually range between 2.7 and 17.0 nanograms per milliliter (ng/mL). However, these ranges can vary among different labs. Your doctor will interpret your results based on your overall health and clinical history.

This test is a standard blood test with minimal risks. You might experience slight pain, bruising or swelling at the site of the needle prick, but these symptoms will soon subside.

Factors affecting folate levels include diet, alcohol consumption, certain medications, pregnancy, and disorders that impair folate absorption, such as celiac disease or Crohn's disease.

If your test results show abnormal folate levels, you should consult a general physician or a hematologist. If you're pregnant and your folate levels are low, consult your obstetrician.

Symptoms of folate deficiency may include fatigue, weakness, pale skin, mouth ulcers, and changes in hair, nails, and skin. In severe cases, it can lead to megaloblastic anemia.

Yes, consuming foods rich in folate, like leafy green vegetables, beans, peas, nuts, and fortified cereals, can increase folate levels in the blood.

Treatment depends on the cause of the abnormal levels. Folate deficiency is usually treated with dietary changes or folic acid supplements, while high levels might require treating the underlying cause, such as discontinuing certain medications or treating kidney disease.

Long-term folate deficiency can lead to megaloblastic anemia and can also cause complications in pregnancy, including neural tube defects and preterm birth.

Yes, folate deficiency can often be prevented by eating a balanced diet that includes plenty of folate-rich foods or taking a daily vitamin supplement containing folic acid.

Monitoring your folate levels through the Folate (Folic Acid) Test can contribute significantly to maintaining your overall health. This test can help detect deficiencies or excesses early, allowing for timely intervention and treatment. Regular checks can be especially crucial for pregnant women or those planning to become pregnant. Always discuss the test results with your doctor, who can provide guidance based on your specific health status and needs.

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