Alzheimer's Disease

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Increased CRP levels are found in inflammatory conditions including: bacterial infection, rheumatic fever, active arthritis, myocardial infarction, malignancies and in the post-operative state. This test cannot detect the relatively small elevations of CRP that are associated with increased cardiovascular risk.

This test determines the subtypes of apoe which will aid in the risk assessment of corornary heart disease (CHD) and hyperlipoproteinemia.

A Complete Blood Count (CBC) Panel is used as a screening test for various disease states including anemia, leukemia and inflammatory processes.

A CBC blood test includes the following biomarkers: WBC, RBC, Hemoglobin, Hematocrit, MCV, MCH, MCHC, RDW, Platelet count, Neutrophils, Lymphs, Monocytes, Eos, Basos, Neutrophils (Absolute), Lymphs (Absolute), Monocytes(Absolute), Eos (Absolute), Basos (Absolute), Immature Granulocytes, Immature Grans (Abs)


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This panel is designed to evaluate a patient for the presence of potentially reversible (i.e., secondary) causes of dementia such as Vitamin B12 deficiency, hypothyroidism, hypoparathyroidism, anemia, hypoxia or hypercapnia, hepatic and renal encephalopathies, diabetes, and dehydration. The panel includes a Complete Blood Count, TSH, Vitamin B12, Folate, and a Comprehensive Metabolic Panel. It is modeled after the recommendations of the American Academy of Neurology (AAN), a National Institutes of Health Consensus Panel, the European Federation of Neurological Societies (EFNS), and others.1-4

This panel may be useful in screening drugs which are commonly encountered in acute toxicity cases. See individual tests for additional clinical significance. See specimen collection guide for additional drug screens.

F2-Isoprostane/Creatinine Ratio (Urine Test)

Clinical Significance

The F2-Isoprostane/Creatinine ratio is used to measure oxidative stress, particularly in individuals with lifestyle risks due to poor diet or smoking, those with a family history of cardiovascular disease or those with hyperlipidemia.

Alternative Name(s) 

IsoPF2,F2 Isoprostane,F2CR,F2-IsoPs


Useful in differentiating inflammatory and neoplastic diseases and as an index of disease severity. CRP is also useful in monitoring inflammatory disease states.

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For diagnosis of hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism.

Note: Free T4 Index (T7) will only be calculated and reported if test code code 861 (T3 Uptake) is ordered as well.


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The Thyroid-stimulating Hormone (TSH) Blood Test is for differential diagnosis of primary, secondary, and tertiary hypothyroidism. The TSH test is also useful in screening for hyperthyroidism. This assay allows adjustment of exogenous thyroxine dosage in hypothyroid patients and in patients on suppressive thyroxine therapy for thyroid neoplasia.


Vitamin B12 is decreased in pernicious anemia, total or partial gastrectomy, malabsorption and certain congenital and biochemical disorders



One in nine people ages 65 and older and live in the United States have Alzheimer’s disease. This is more than 11% of the population, and the number is only growing.

Even though the prevalence of the disease and the population of elderly individuals is increasing, there still isn’t a cure for Alzheimer’s. Recent research studies are showing promise, but nothing is proven.

Therefore, anyone who thinks that they or a loved one may have the condition needs to get Alzheimer’s blood tests. These can help patients and their providers detect Alzheimer’s early, and this early diagnosis can slow the progression of the disease.

Keep reading if you're interested in learning more about how these blood tests can help Alzheimer's patients.

What Is Alzheimer’s Disease?

Alzheimer's disease is a progressive neurological disorder. Over time, the cells of the brain die, and the brain shrinks in size. 

This loss of brain matter leads to a cognitive decline, meaning that patients may experience a loss of thinking, behavioral, and social skills.

Alzheimer's disease is the most common cause of dementia, a disease marked by a continuous decline in thinking ability.

What Are the Risk Factors for Alzheimer’s Disease?

The most notable risk factor is a person's age. As you get older, you're more likely to develop Alzheimer's disease.

With this information, it's important to distinguish the fact that Alzheimer's is not a normal part of aging. The degradation that comes with Alzheimer's disease is not the same as the degradation that comes with the aging process.

Another risk factor is genetics. If an immediate family member has the disease, it's more likely that you'll have it as well. 

Individuals that carry the Alzheimer's gene are likely to carry the ApoE genotype as well. However, having the gene for the disease does not necessarily mean that you're going to develop the condition.

Another risk factor for Alzheimer's disease is pre-existing Down syndrome. Although the scientific community doesn't understand the link between the two conditions, they tend to agree it has to do with the extra chromosome copy found in individuals with Down syndrome.

Some scientists believe that the link between Down syndrome and Alzheimer's exists because of an early susceptibility. Patients with Down syndrome are likely to begin developing signs and symptoms of Alzheimer's 10 to 20 years before those without the pre-existing condition. So, some researchers think that this early susceptibility gives the body more time to develop the condition.

What Causes Alzheimer’s Disease?

No one knows the exact causes of Alzheimer's disease. People have speculated over the years but haven't settled on a finite answer.

However, researchers believe that the development of the disease has to do with a regulation failure in the brain. More specifically, scientists believe that the proteins in the brain may not be working properly, which causes the cells to fail and triggers a series of toxic events.

Over time, this kills neurons and causes brain damage, leading to worsening signs and symptoms.

Scientists have also stated that they believe that the condition develops as a result of environmental and genetic influences. People with genetic ties to the condition have been able to conquer the gene; however, you shouldn't rely on lifestyle changes to ensure that you'll never develop the condition.

What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease?

The number one symptom of Alzheimer's disease is memory loss. You may start noticing that you or your loved one can't recollect everyday information.

They may not know family members' names or similar information.

Here are a few other signs of Alzheimer's disease that you may notice in a family member or friend who is developing the disease:

  • Repeating statements and/or questions.
  • Forgetting conversations, events, appointments, etc.
  • Getting lost in places that they've been before.
  • Misplacing items that they own.
  • Having trouble identifying everyday objects.
  • Making wrong decisions that are uncharacteristic for the individual.
  • Changing personality traits quickly.

If you are displaying these symptoms, you should see a doctor. Even if it's not Alzheimer's, there could be another issue that you need to address. You shouldn't wait until it's too late.

What Are the Lab Tests for Alzheimer’s Disease?

To detect Alzheimer’s disease, physicians have to look for several different kinds of biomarkers. Here are some of the most common lab tests that physicians use to test for Alzheimer's disease:

  • C-reactive protein - a general test to look at inflammation levels in the body.
  • Cardio IQ ApoE genotype - a test to determine if you have the Alzheimer's gene or not.
  • Complete blood count - evaluates the levels and presence of different types of blood cells.
  • Comprehensive metabolic panel - a test that provides a broad look at your health as it evaluates liver and kidney function and various nutrient levels.
  • Drug screen - a routine test to determine if mental changes could be from other causes such as recreational drugs or prescription medications.
  • Sedimentation rate - a general test to look at the rate of inflammation in the body.
  • Total T4 - a test that aids in the diagnosis of hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism, which could be an alternative diagnosis for mental changes in a patient.
  • Thyroid-stimulating hormone - a test that can help in the diagnosis of hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism.
  • Vitamin B12 - looks for the levels of B12 in the bloodstream to make sure that blood and DNA production is normal.

Together, all of these lab tests and results can help your physician determine whether or not you have Alzheimer's disease. At the same time, it can help them figure out if you're presenting other illnesses. These conditions could be contributing to extraneous symptoms or exacerbating existing symptoms.

Where Can I Order Alzheimer’s Blood Tests?

Whether you're curious or concerned, the tests offered at Ulta Lab Tests can help you figure out if you have Alzheimer's disease. Order our comprehensive Alzheimer's panel today to get the answers that you need.

With Ulta Lab Tests you get:

  • Tests that are highly accurate and reliable
  • Access to 2100 authorized patient service centers
  • Secure and confidential results within 24 to 48 hours for most tests
  • No insurance is needed
  • No doctor’s referral required
  • Affordable pricing that includes a doctor’s order
  • 100% satisfaction guarantee

Take control of your health today with Ulta Lab Tests.

Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) is a progressive form of (irreversible) dementia characterized by deteriorating language, speech skills, memory loss, a decline in intellectual ability over time, and behavioral/personality changes that affect a person’s usual way of life. The condition mainly affects older adults, with approximately 5.5 million Americans (aged above 65) and 200,000 younger persons having been diagnosed with the disease.  

Although some symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease mimic certain aging signs, AD isn’t part of the normal aging process. The condition may set in due to the injury and death of nerve cells. This happens as a result of abnormal protein structures (known as amyloid/senile plagues) building up in the brain and neurofibrillary tangles. The damaged or dead nerve cells disrupt the normal functioning of neurotransmitters (such as acetylcholine); this makes it hard for chemical signals to find their way to the brain.  This cuts off/reduces the interaction of various parts/areas of the brain, hence reduced brain action.  

Aging and Alzheimer’s Disease  

As mentioned earlier, the risk of dementia increases as one approaches senior hood. According to research, at least 10% of the American population will be diagnosed with dementia by the time they are 65, with a 50% risk for individuals who live to see 100 years. Studies by the Alzheimer’s Association show that the number of dementia patients may increase to 16 million by the year 2050.  

Early-onset Alzheimer’s disease starts before 65 years and accounts for approximately 7.5% of all recorded cases. Late-onset AD, on the other hand, is prevalent with individuals over this age, though not believed to be hereditary.  Early-onset Alzheimer’s is more likely caused by disease-causing variants of mutation from inherited genes.  

Genetics and Alzheimer’s  

The cause of late-onset Alzheimer’s (the most common type) is yet to be known. Researchers have, however, identified three genes associated with various kinds of early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. These are APP, PSEN1, and PSEN2. Any slight alteration/change of these genes causes abnormal protein production, one of the contributing factors of senile plagues hence progressive dementia. A small mutation of one of these genes is enough to cause AD. The mutated genes can, therefore, be passed down several generations, hence early-onset AD.  

Although scientists are yet to discover the causative genes of late-onset Alzheimer’s disease, some genes have been linked with this disorder. While individuals who have this variant of genes may not automatically develop Alzheimer’s in their adulthood, their risk is greatly increased when compared to those without the said genes. Commonly referred to as ‘susceptibility genes,’ these genes have helped shed light on the risk of developing late-onset AD, and especially in families with members suffering from AD.  

The APOE gene is an excellent example of an established susceptibility gene. This gene helps induce apolipoprotein E production, the protein responsible for transporting fats and cholesterol (lipids) in the blood. The APOE gene occurs in 3 forms: e2, e3, and e4, also known as alleles.  A combination of, or all these, alleles can be found in almost everyone, with e3 being the most common. About 60% of the entire population has the e3 allele gene. One allele the e3 allele, has been linked to Alzheimer’s disease.  

Many individuals suffering from Down Syndrome (DS) are at a higher risk of developing Alzheimer’s Disease.  An abnormal trisomy of chromosome 21 causes the condition. The additional copy of chromosome 21 is believed to trigger an increased production of proteins in the brain, which accumulates to form senile plaques. The plagues are quite identical to those seen in Alzheimer’s Disease. Although a DS patient may show mental changes linked to AD, their relatives do not have a high risk of developing Alzheimer’s. This is because they (the relatives) may/do not have the additional chromosome 21 copy.  

Additional Risk Factors  

Your ethnicity may or may not increase your risk of developing Alzheimer’s.  A good example of this are persons of African American ancestry and Caucasians. African Americans are times more likely to develop Alzheimer’s when compared to their Caucasian counterparts.  Other factors that may influence your risk of AD include obesity, insulin resistance (from diabetes type 2), high blood pressure, high levels of inflammatory markers (C-reactive proteins), and unhealthy lipid levels.  Although these factors may influence your risk of developing the condition, this doesn’t mean an obese person, for example, will have the disease.  

New guidelines and criteria for Alzheimer’s disease diagnosis were released in 2011 by the National Institute on Aging NIA, the Alzheimer’s Association, and the National Institutes of Health (NIH). These Expert workgroups have helped provide additional ways and methods of diagnosing the conditions. They have also published articles on Alzheimer’s Disease and the various stages. These are:  

  • 1. Preclinical Alzheimer’s Disease – This involves identifying biomarkers that indicate onset, such as the presence of specific proteins in the cerebrospinal fluids, and brain imaging. The idea is to define a preclinical state to guide research on the same, and especially where there are no outward symptoms.   
  • 2. Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) – These are the insignificant changes in thinking abilities and memory, which do not affect daily activities. Individuals with MCI may or may not develop Alzheimer’s Disease.   
  • 3. Dementia due to Alzheimer’s Disease – thinking, memory, and behavioral symptoms are evident and impact the person’s ability to lead a normal life.  

The criteria and guidelines outlined above should help provide more information on Alzheimer’s disease, as well as provide a way forward for research in the future. These are also intended to propose the importance of biomarkers in diagnosing the condition in the future too.  

Signs and Symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease 

There are ten signs and symptoms to watch out for Alzheimer’s Disease. Although some people may have memory problems as they get older, memory loss issues with persons with AD are more pronounced and severe. These include:  

  • 1. Forgetfulness. The person will become more and more forgetful, making it hard to learn anything new, and even forget important events and dates. The individual may have to depend on memory aids and notebooks to remember most of the hard-to-forget events. He/she will ask for the same information repeatedly without noticing it.  
  • 2. Difficulties solving simple problems, and planning- The individual might find it hard to keep track of bills and payments.  
  • 3. Problems solving simple tasks, such as finding his/her way back home, computing taxes, etc.   
  • 4. Losing track of time and place  
  • 5. Difficulties judging distances and reading.    
  • 6. Difficulties in reading, writing, and speaking. The person may struggle with simple vocabularies, forget words, and repeating phrases.   
  • 7. Losing personal items and the inability to retrace steps back to the house.  
  • 8. Impaired judgment. The individual will often make mistakes paying for something by either giving too much or fail to pay at all.   
  • 9. Withdrawal from social activities, family events, and work 
  • 10. Mood and personality change. He/she may experience increased fear, depression, suspicion, and anxiety.  

Tests 

There is no tangible way of determining if someone has Alzheimer’s or not, at least not when he/she is alive.  The only feasible way to determine this is by examining a section of the patient’s brain tissue microscopically after their death.  The pathologist will look for neurofibrillary tangles and senile tangles characteristic of Alzheimer’s.  The tangle formation and plague may also be seen from normal aging, which is why the pathologist must compare a normal non-Ad tissue with a normal healthy one.  

The healthcare practitioner can, however, use reasonable clinical diagnosis (by running a series of tests and procedures) to eliminate other causes of dementia. The doctor will first evaluate the patient’s family and personal history, do a physical examination, give neuropsychological tests to measure language skills, memory, and other cognitive functions, and determine the age of onset. All these tests must be done and especially where the patient has symptoms of dementia.  

Several general lab tests may also need to be done to rule out other conditions, diseases, and nutritional deficiencies that might be affecting the individual’s brain performance. Overmedication may have similar signs and symptoms too. The health practitioner may also choose to use imaging tools such as MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scans, and Computed Tomography (CT)scans to look for evidence of tumors, trauma, and stroke, which may cause dementia as well. These imaging tests help identify shrinkage and atrophy that show in advanced stages of Alzheimer’s disease.  

All these tests may be used to help rule out potentially reversible dementia – Alzheimer’s is, however, irreversible.  

Less common lab tests may be done if the health practitioner suspects Alzheimer’s disease.  These tests are meant to help distinguish between other forms of dementia and AD, and to check genetics. See the table below for more info. 

More than 65% of all patients have one type of APOE e4 allele. Individuals with e4 alleles are at the highest risk of developing AD. This genotype isn’t, however, very common.          

Less Common Lab Tests 

  • PSEN1 blood Test: Test for gene mutation: Associated with 50% of all cases of early-onset AD 
  • PSEN2 blood test:  Test for genetic mutation; it is only available on select labs:  It tests for early-onset AD due to variation, though very rare.  
  • APP test: Blood: Test for gene mutation: which is only available in a few laboratories:.This test is used for diagnosing early-onset AD. Although mutation may be rare, several families may have this marker.  

Research and studies on possible new biomarkers that may help diagnose Alzheimer’s disease easily are ongoing.  Only the studies and tests outlined above can be used to learn more about Alzheimer’s for the moment.