Your blood contains a certain amount of protein that helps regulate various body functions, fight against infections and facilitate chemical reactions in the body. For a normal healthy person, protein in blood usually falls between 6.0 grams per deciliter (g/dl) and 8.3 g/dl. However, in case you are suffering from some serious health condition, the protein level in your blood will be unusually high. Do a protein test to find out if there is a serious health problem you need to treat right away!
Symptoms of High Protein in Blood
Albumin and globulin are the two main types of serum proteins present in the blood. Vitamins, minerals, lipids and hormones are transported around your body by these proteins. A million things occupy your mind and keep you busy all day. In order to stay healthy, however, it is important to pay attention to the almost inconspicuous bodily changes. It is best to consult your doctor immediately, in case you experience regular bouts of:
- Appetite loss
- Drop in blood pressure
- Numbness or a tingling sensation in your fingers or toes
- Severe fatigue
- Unexplained weight loss
These are some of the most common symptoms of high protein in the blood. The symptoms may vary, depending upon the causes. There have been quite a few instances where the doc has diagnosed elevated blood protein count even before any symptoms were noticed. Visit your GP in case any of the above symptoms crop up and recur.
What Causes High Blood Protein Levels?
A common misconception is that a high protein diet is responsible for increased levels of protein in the blood. This surmise is however far from the medical truth. Obtain the right information and treat the condition more effectively. Factors that lead to high blood protein levels are usually a lot more serious. You could trace the causes of high blood protein levels to:
- Bone marrow disorders
- Chronic infection or inflammation of the tissues or the liver
- Congestive heart failure
- HIV / AIDS
- Hepatitis B or C
- Immune system dysfunction (caused by conditions like rheumatoid arthritis)
- Multiple Myeloma
- Tumors in the bladder
In some cases, high blood protein could also occur due to the regular use of nephrotoxic drugs.
Treatment for Abnormally High Protein Count
Your doctor may design the treatment for the abnormally high protein count in the blood based on the underlying cause as well as the severity of the condition. This means that your doctor will focus on controlling the condition that has caused the problem, which in turn should bring the levels of protein in the blood back to normal. Prompt diagnosis and treatments could help you recover at a faster rate.
Along with taking medicines, here’s what you can do to aid the treatment:
- Eat healthy – Your diet should contain a variety of vegetables and pulses that provide you with essential nutrients and vitamins.
- Peaceful repose – Get the recommended amount of sleep, rest and exercise that your body needs each day.
- Release pent-up stress – Practice meditation, yoga and deep breathing to calm down and just relax.
Visit your doctor regularly so that your treatment for high levels of blood protein is better supervised.
Test for increased blood protein levels
The amount of protein present in the blood can be measured through a blood test, where a small sample of blood is drawn from your vein. There is a risk of bleeding in this test and you may experience some pain while the blood is being drawn.
A protein urine test could also be used to gauge the quantity of proteins that are present in a urine sample. There is no discomfort or known risk associated with this test; you just need to provide a urine sample. At times, you may be asked to provide a 24-hour urine sample.
Do bear in mind that certain factors could alter the test results. If you have been taking any medication just before the test, you need to inform your healthcare provider about it. Some of the other factors that could also interfere with the blood protein test results are:
- Contamination of the urine with vaginal fluids
- Excessive emotional stress
- Strenuous exercise
- Urinary Tract infection (UTI)
In case you’ve been through a radiology scan within 3 days before the protein test, inform your doctor.
During pregnancy, most healthcare providers will ask you to go through a urine test, just to rule out the possibilities of any health problems. Excess blood protein is usually detected through this test. Elevated blood protein during pregnancy could be a sign of:
- Problems in the functioning of the kidneys
- Lack of adequate water intake
- Chronic conditions such as diabetes or hypertension
Hyperproteinemia during pregnancy is quite serious and could also create complications, such as:
- Premature delivery
- Low birth weight
- Miscarriage or still birth
Of course, there have been several instances of women who have had high blood protein during pregnancy, but have gone on to deliver healthy babies. Therefore, you need to work with your doctor and bring your protein levels under control, as soon as possible. The treatment methods may vary, depending upon the underlying cause.