Ant asked in Science & MathematicsMedicine · 6 years ago

To any doctors out there, what is ammonium?

I had a blood test a few weeks back and when my neurologist got the result, she said the ammonium in my blood was very high (I hope it's spelled right). She said the normal high of it in someone's blood would be 120(I think). Mine came back and in my body there was 450. So what is it and what does it do to the body? I hope I explained this right. Thank you.

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  • 6 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    The liver converts ammonia to urea, which is then eliminated in the urine. An ammonia test measures the amount of ammonia in the blood, which can give your physician an idea if you have normal liver and kidney function, hypokalemia, leukemia, GI Bleeding, or an anomaly that is something cardiac related. An ammonia test can also be run to identify or track the prognosis of a condition called Reye syndrome, that affects both the liver and the brain; which is what they were most likely checking for- since you went to a neurologist. Ammonia tests can also track success of treatment of an acute disease process of the liver- such as cirrhosis...A normal value for an ammonia test is somewhere between 9-50mcg/dL. They could've tested in a different unit, per mL or something. To be frank, that 450, regardless of units, is extremely high, and I would suspect an acute disease process of the liver or kidneys. You'll probably have to have secondary tests to determine why that value is so high. Best of luck!

  • Gary H
    Lv 7
    6 years ago

    A couple points... First, there are all sorts of things that can happen when labs are testing stuff. Before you get freaked out, ask your doctor (or ask a different doctor) to repeat the test.

    If the results come out "high" again, then you want to find out more about what "high" means exactly. If the "normal" average for normal health people is 120 but the normal range is from 60 to 600, maybe 450 is not that big a deal. On the flip side, if normal is 100 to 140 and 450 is like "Bill Gates Rich" then your doctor probably would have had you admitted to the hospital that day.

    If you want to do some research on your own, there is a free database of the latest national and international medical scientific literature. Access is FREE (thank you Obama-care!!!). Go to www.pubmed.org. This is a database of medical science papers written by doctors and scientists for doctors and scientists so , unless you have your own MD degree, you will probably need access to a medical dictionary (also online). Anyway... if you can do some relatively advanced searches on Google, you can figure out how to search Pubmed. Defining some of the key medical terms and then searching for those specific terms will get you a very long way. Reading the abstracts is free, reading some articles are free but some you have to buy. You can pay attention to the authors. If you really get into this, you might find authors who work at hospitals or universities near where you live and you might try contacting them directly.

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