Coagulation is when a blood clot is formed over a wound. However, to achieve coagulation, our bodies have to go through a process called hemostasis.
Hemostasis is a series of metabolic processes that include the proper performance of our blood vessels, platelets, and certain proteins produced in the liver.
While most blood coagulation tests and interpretations will tell us how quickly and how well our system can form blood clots, the results can also inform us about illnesses or health conditions we may have.
In this article, we will present you with the most common instances when your doctor may order a blood coagulation test.
Bleeding or Bruising Easily
Bleeding or bruising easily are signs of a bleeding disorder. A bleeding disorder is a condition that causes abnormal bleeding or blood clotting problems. Other symptoms in bleeding disorders are unexplained nosebleeds, heavy menstrual bleeding, prolonged bleeding from small cuts, and skin marks (red or purple dots/patches).
Having a bleeding disorder implies that your body has either:
- Platelets cells deficiency
- Clotting factors (plasma proteins) that don’t work properly
- Lack of vitamin K
- Low red blood cell count
- A side effect reaction for taking certain medications or supplements (blood thinners)
Also, bleeding disorders are the result of illnesses like liver disease or hemophilia.
Your doctor will need to do a coagulation profile test to confirm a bleeding disorder. Some of the tests used to diagnose a bleeding disorder are:
- Tests of the Coagulation Cascade (Prothrombin Time, Partial Thromboplastin Time, and Thrombin Time)
- Coagulation Factor Tests
- Tests of Fibrinolysis (Fibrin Degradation Products)
- MPV Blood Test
- D-dimer Test
The treatment for bleeding disorders depends on the severity of the illness. Most likely, doctors will prescribe iron supplementation for mild or moderate bleeding disorders. A blood transfusion is required for the treatment of severe cases.
Blood in Urine
Hematuria (blood in the urine) is a characteristic symptom of certain medical conditions. One of them is a type of kidney disease called glomerulonephritis, which affects the glomeruli, a kidney component that is responsible for filtering the blood.
Among the necessary tests to diagnose kidney disease, your doctor may order a blood test to see any residues or waste left behind due to kidney malfunction. This coagulation blood test is known as the Fibrin Degradation Product Blood Test. Abnormal results are from above 10 mcg/mL. Results may vary depending on the lab and you should reach your doctor for help with result interpretation.
Abnormal Blood Clotting
Blood clots that form when they shouldn’t is a sign of blood clotting disorders. This condition involves abnormal clotting, meaning if the body forms too much — leads to thrombosis — or not enough — causes hemorrhages — clotting.
Blood clotting disorders happen when blood clots are formed in the arteries or veins. The causes of clotting disorders are due to acquired or genetically inherited conditions, such as:
- Abnormal fibrinolysis
- High levels of certain clotting factors (VIII, IX, and XI)
- Deficiencies of blood-thinning proteins
- Prothrombin gene mutation
- As a result of surgery or trauma
Clotting disorders can lead to conditions like deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, heart attack, and severe leg pain.
Depending on your symptoms, a doctor will run a coagulation test. Some of the tests required to confirm a clotting disorder are Fibrin Degradation Products, Prothrombin time (PT) and Partial Thromboplastin Time (PTT), and Complete Blood Count.
BASS Urgent Care provides mindful diagnoses and treatment for blood coagulation related illnesses. Our facilities count with on-site labs and highly qualified healthcare professionals. Reach out to us!