Blood Chemistry - Basic Most Popular

The following is a list of what is included in the item above. Click the test(s) below to view what biomarkers are measured along with an explanation of what the biomarker is measuring.

Also known as: Chem 12, Chemistry Panel, Chemistry Screen, CMP, Complete Metabolic Panel, Comprehensive Metabolic Panel CMP, SMA 12, SMA 20


Albumin is a protein made by the liver. A serum albumin test measures the amount of this protein in the clear liquid portion of the blood.

Albumin/Globulin Ratio

The ratio of albumin to globulin (A/G ratio) is calculated from measured albumin and calculated globulin (total protein - albumin). Normally, there is a little more albumin than globulins, giving a normal A/G ratio of slightly over 1. Because disease states affect the relative amounts of albumin and globulin, the A/G ratio may provide a clue as to the cause of the change in protein levels. A low A/G ratio may reflect overproduction of globulins, such as seen in multiple myeloma or autoimmune diseases, or underproduction of albumin, such as may occur with cirrhosis, or selective loss of albumin from the circulation, as may occur with kidney disease (nephrotic syndrome). A high A/G ratio suggests underproduction of immunoglobulins as may be seen in some genetic deficiencies and in some leukemias. More specific tests, such as liver enzyme tests and serum protein electrophoresis, must be performed to make an accurate diagnosis. With a low total protein that is due to plasma expansion (dilution of the blood), the A/G ratio will typically be normal because both albumin and globulin will be diluted to the same extent.

Alkaline Phosphatase

Alkaline phosphatase (ALP) is a protein found in all body tissues. Tissues with higher amounts of ALP include the liver, bile ducts, and bone.


Alanine transaminase (ALT) is an enzyme found in the highest amounts in the liver. Injury to the liver results in release of the substance into the blood.


AST (aspartate aminotransferase) is an enzyme found in high amounts in liver, heart, and muscle cells. It is also found in lesser amounts in other tissues.

Bilirubin, Total

Bilirubin is a yellowish pigment found in bile, a fluid made by the liver. A small amount of older red blood cells are replaced by new blood cells every day. Bilirubin is left after these older blood cells are removed. The liver helps break down bilirubin so that it can be removed from the body in the stool.

Bun/Creatinine Ratio

A ratio between a person’s BUN and blood creatinine to help determine what is causing these concentrations to be higher than normal. The ratio of BUN to creatinine is usually between 10:1 and 20:1. An increased ratio may be due to a condition that causes a decrease in the flow of blood to the kidneys, such as congestive heart failure or dehydration. It may also be seen with increased protein, from gastrointestinal bleeding, or increased protein in the diet. The ratio may be decreased with liver disease (due to decrease in the formation of urea) and malnutrition.


You have more calcium in your body than any other mineral. Calcium has many important jobs. The body stores more than 99 percent of its calcium in the bones and teeth to help make and keep them strong. The rest is throughout the body in blood, muscle and the fluid between cells. Your body needs calcium to help muscles and blood vessels contract and expand, to secrete hormones and enzymes and to send messages through the nervous system.

Carbon Dioxide

CO2 is carbon dioxide. Measures the amount of carbon dioxide in the liquid part of your blood, called the serum. In the body, most of the CO2 is in the form of a substance called bicarbonate (HCO3-). Therefore, the CO2 blood test is really a measure of your blood bicarbonate level.


Chloride is a type of electrolyte. It works with other electrolytes such as potassium, sodium, and carbon dioxide (CO2). These substances help keep the proper balance of body fluids and maintain the body's acid-base balance. This is a measure of the amount of chloride in the fluid portion (serum) of the blood.


The creatinine blood test measures the level of creatinine in the blood. This test is done to see how well your kidneys work.

Egfr African American

Glomerular filtration rate (GFR) is a test used to check how well the kidneys are working. Specifically, it estimates how much blood passes through the glomeruli each minute. Glomeruli are the tiny filters in the kidneys that filter waste from the blood.

Egfr Non-Afr. American

Glomerular filtration rate (GFR) is a test used to check how well the kidneys are working. Specifically, it estimates how much blood passes through the glomeruli each minute. Glomeruli are the tiny filters in the kidneys that filter waste from the blood.




Globulins is the collective term for most blood proteins other than albumin. Identifying the types of globulins can help diagnose certain disorders. Globulins are roughly divided into three groups: alpha, beta, and gamma globulins. Gamma globulines include various types of antibodies such as immunoglobulins (Ig) M, G, and A.


A blood glucose test measures the amount of a sugar called glucose in a sample of your blood. Glucose is a major source of energy for most cells of the body, including those in the brain. The hormones insulin and glucagon help control blood glucose levels.


Potassium is a mineral that the body needs to work normally. It helps nerves and muscles communicate. It also helps move nutrients into cells and waste products out of cells. A diet rich in potassium helps to offset some of sodium's harmful effects on blood pressure.

Protein, Total

The total protein is the total amount of two classes of proteins, albumin and globulin that are found in the fluid portion of your blood. Proteins are important parts of all cells and tissues. Your albumin helps prevent fluid from leaking out of blood vessels and your globulins are an important part of your immune system.


Sodium is a substance that the body needs to work properly it is vital to normal body processes, including nerve and muscle function

Urea Nitrogen (Bun)

BUN stands for blood urea nitrogen. Urea nitrogen is what forms when protein breaks down. BUN measures the amount of urea nitrogen in the blood.

Also known as: Iron and TIBC, Iron and Total Iron Binding Capacity TIBC, TIBC

% Saturation

Iron Binding Capacity

Total iron binding capacity (TIBC) is a blood test to see if you may have too much or too little iron in the blood. Iron moves through the blood attached to a protein called transferrin. This test helps your doctor know how well that protein can carry iron in the blood.

Iron, Total

Iron is a mineral that our bodies need for many functions. For example, iron is part of hemoglobin, a protein which carries oxygen from our lungs throughout our bodies. It helps our muscles store and use oxygen. Iron is also part of many other proteins and enzymes. Your body needs the right amount of iron. If you have too little iron, you may develop iron deficiency anemia. Causes of low iron levels include blood loss, poor diet, or an inability to absorb enough iron from foods. People at higher risk of having too little iron are young children and women who are pregnant or have periods.

Also known as: Lipid Panel with Ratios (fasting), Lipid Profile with Ratios (fasting), Lipids

Chol/HDLC Ratio

Cholesterol, Total

Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance that occurs naturally in all parts of the body. Your body needs some cholesterol to work properly. But if you have too much in your blood, it can combine with other substances in the blood and stick to the walls of your arteries. This is called plaque. Plaque can narrow your arteries or even block them. High levels of cholesterol in the blood can increase your risk of heart disease. Your cholesterol levels tend to rise as you get older. There are usually no signs or symptoms that you have high blood cholesterol, but it can be detected with a blood test. You are likely to have high cholesterol if members of your family have it, if you are overweight or if you eat a lot of fatty foods. You can lower your cholesterol by exercising more and eating more fruits and vegetables. You also may need to take medicine to lower your cholesterol.

HDL Cholesterol



Non HDL Cholesterol


Triglycerides are a form of fat and a major source of energy for the body. This test measures the amount of triglycerides in the blood. Most triglycerides are found in fat (adipose) tissue, but some triglycerides circulate in the blood to provide fuel for muscles to work. After a person eats, an increased level of triglycerides is found in the blood as the body converts the energy not needed right away into fat. Triglycerides move via the blood from the gut to adipose tissue for storage. In between meals, triglycerides are released from fat tissue to be used as an energy source for the body. Most triglycerides are carried in the blood by lipoproteins called very low density lipoproteins (VLDL). High levels of triglycerides in the blood are associated with an increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease (CVD), although the reason for this is not well understood. Certain factors can contribute to high triglyceride levels and to risk of CVD, including lack of exercise, being overweight, smoking cigarettes, consuming excess alcohol, and medical conditions such as diabetes and kidney disease.
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The Blood Chemistry - Basic panel contains 3 tests with 31 biomarkers.

Brief Description: The Blood Chemistry - Basic Panel is an essential diagnostic tool that provides a comprehensive overview of an individual's metabolic health, including liver and kidney function, electrolyte and fluid balance, and cholesterol levels. This panel is crucial for detecting underlying health issues, monitoring existing conditions, and guiding treatment decisions.

Collection Method: Blood Draw 

Specimen Type: Serum 

Test Preparation: The patient should be fasting 9-12 hours prior to collection. Collection should be done in the morning.

When and Why It May Be Ordered

This panel is commonly ordered during routine health check-ups, when symptoms suggest a metabolic or nutritional disorder, or to monitor the effectiveness of ongoing treatment. It's also used to screen for risk factors associated with heart disease and other conditions.

What the Panel Checks For

  • Comprehensive Metabolic Panel (CMP): Evaluates your blood sugar level, kidney and liver function, and electrolyte and fluid balance.

  • Iron and Total Iron Binding Capacity (TIBC): Assesses iron levels in your blood and your body's capacity to bind and transport iron, which is crucial for identifying iron deficiency anemia or iron overload conditions.

  • Lipid Panel with Ratios: Measures levels of cholesterol and triglycerides in your blood, providing information about your risk of developing heart disease.

Getting a Deeper Understanding of Your Metabolic Health

To further enhance the diagnostic capabilities beyond the Blood Chemistry - Basic Panel, more comprehensive test packages are available, offering a deeper dive into your health status and providing a broader spectrum of data for healthcare providers to assess.

Blood Chemistry - Basic Plus Panel

The Blood Chemistry - Basic Plus Panel builds upon the Basic Panel by incorporating additional tests that are pivotal in diagnosing and monitoring more nuanced health conditions. This panel adds:

  • Gamma Glutamyl Transferase (GGT): A liver enzyme test that helps detect bile duct issues and liver health.
  • Hemoglobin A1c: Offers insight into your average blood sugar levels over the past three months, crucial for diabetes management.
  • Phosphate & Uric Acid: These tests provide insight into bone health and the risk of gout or kidney stones, respectively.

This panel is suitable for individuals seeking a more detailed understanding of their metabolic health and potential risk factors for chronic conditions.

Blood Chemistry - Advanced Panel

The Blood Chemistry - Advanced Panel takes a comprehensive approach to health screening by including all tests from the Basic Plus Panel and adding:

  • Bilirubin Fractionated and Ferritin: To evaluate liver function and iron storage levels, offering clues about liver health and potential iron disorders.
  • Lactate Dehydrogenase & Magnesium Serum: These tests can indicate tissue damage and evaluate magnesium levels, which play a role in numerous bodily functions.

This panel is ideal for individuals requiring a thorough evaluation due to existing health concerns or those at higher risk of certain diseases.

Blood Chemistry - Comprehensive Panel

The pinnacle of thorough testing, the Blood Chemistry - Comprehensive Panel, includes everything in the Advanced Panel and extends further to encompass thyroid function tests and a more detailed lipid profile. This panel is particularly useful for individuals with a family history of thyroid disorders or cardiovascular diseases, providing a full spectrum of data for a holistic health assessment.

Conditions or Diseases Checked

The Basic Panel is instrumental in screening for and monitoring a range of conditions:

  • Metabolic Disorders: Such as diabetes or prediabetes, which can be indicated by abnormal glucose levels.
  • Liver Diseases: Including hepatitis or fatty liver disease, which may be suggested by abnormal results in the CMP, particularly liver enzyme levels.
  • Kidney Dysfunction: Revealed by the CMP through markers such as BUN and creatinine.
  • Iron Deficiency or Overload: Conditions like anemia or hemochromatosis can be assessed through iron and TIBC tests.
  • Lipid Disorders: Elevated cholesterol or triglyceride levels can indicate a higher risk of atherosclerosis and cardiovascular diseases.

By opting for more comprehensive panels, individuals at risk for specific conditions such as thyroid disorders, more nuanced forms of anemia, or those with a complex health history can gain a more detailed understanding of their health status, facilitating early detection and management of potential health issues.

The Blood Chemistry - Basic Panel is a fundamental tool in the proactive management of one's health, offering a snapshot of vital metabolic functions and risk factors for common diseases. For those seeking a deeper health analysis or managing specific health conditions, the progression to more advanced panels provides a broader data set, enabling a more targeted approach to healthcare and wellness. Through these panels, healthcare professionals can tailor treatment plans more effectively, ensuring a proactive and personalized approach to health management.

We advise having your results reviewed by a licensed medical healthcare professional for proper interpretation of your results.

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