What does a CRP level of 5 mean in a blood test?
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C-reactive protein (CRP) is a marker of inflammation in the body. Therefore, its level in the blood increases if there is any inflammation in the body. C-reactive protein, along with other markers of inflammation (erythrocyte sedimentation rate, sed rate, or ESR) are also sometimes referred to as acute phase reactants. C-reactive protein is produced by the cells in the liver.
It is important to recognize that CRP, similar to other markers of inflammation, can be elevated because of any inflammatory process or infection and, thus, its interpretation needs careful assessment of the entire clinical picture by the ordering physician. Other inflammatory processes, such as active arthritis, trauma, or infections, can raise the c-reactive protein level independently.
Because of the these variables and fluctuations, it is also recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to measure fasting and non-fasting c-reactive protein levels ideally two weeks apart, and to use the average of these two results for a more accurate interpretation if the CRP level is used as a screening tool for cardiovascular disease.
High sensitivity CRP (hsCRP) blood tests able to measure down to 0.3 mg/L — which is necessary in risk assessment for vascular disease are available. Anyway you can go with mobile App for blood testing solution.
High c-reactive protein levels may predict a higher risk for cardiovascular disease alone or in combination with these other known predictors. Some studies have suggested an elevated risk for cardiovascular disease associated with elevated c-reactive protein levels even after correcting for the other risk factors.
C-Reactive protein(CRP) levels in healthy human are between 5 and 10 mg/L and higher levels in pregnants, burns, infections and active inflammation. In people with cardiovascular diseases:
- low: less than 1.0 mg/L
- average: between 1.0 and 3.0 mg/L
- high: above 3.0 mg/L
CRP is released by the liver and is an indication of an infection or inflammation. It is a sign for potential risk factor for heart disease. Inflammation is actually considered as an important contributing factor for coronary heart disease. Many epidemiologic studies have shown a significant associaton of CRP and the risk of recurrent cardiovascular events among patients with heart disease.
Therefore, it is important to reduce inflammation through medications or diet/ supplements/exercise in order to reduce cardiac risk. Statins (HMG CoA reductase inhibitors) lead to reduction of CRP. Aspirin reduces another inflammatory marker IL-6 but not CRP. Jenkins et al. have found that diet has a similar effect as medications on CRP reduction and lowering cholesterol. Oxidative stress can trigger inflammation. Therefore, a diet high in fruits and vegetable and increasing omega-3 fatty acid may decrease inflammatory markers.
C-Reactive Protein is produced in the liver in response to some chemicals made by immune cells in the process of an inflammatory response. These chemicals can be produced in response to a short-term inflammation (infection, tissue trauma, etc), or can be produced long-term if the inflammation is chronic.
CRP below 1 is considered “low risk.” That risk is in reference to risk of a cardiovascular issue in particular. Between 1 and 3 is considered “average risk,” and above 3 is “high risk.” Obviously if the elevation is due to a recent infection or trauma or surgery or something, it would be an expected elevation and it should drop accordingly over time.
But if the elevation remains upon serial testing over weeks or months, that is indicating a chronic inflammatory process happening in the body, which should be investigated and treated as appropriate. Chronic inflammation is, in many ways, the root of all biological evil. The vast majority of modern maladies are driven by an underlying inflammatory process.
As a final note, I consider a CRP level in the “average risk” range to be in need of addressing. Heart disease is the #1 killer of both men and women in the US. Being of average risk for it is certainly not optimal.
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Different answers list different normal ranges. Perhaps I can clarify. First, each lab can set its own norms. The older CRP assay is usually considered normal if up to 10. The high sensitivityCRP is usually considered normal if under 3.
If you look at the other answers you will see contradictions. That’s because you DIDN’T QUOTE THE UNITS.
In the USA the units are mg per decilitre but in most of the world units are mg per litre. So the reference range differs by a factor of 10.
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It may mean you have some kind of inflamation in the body.
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A reference range of 0 – 10 mg/L is generally considered to be within normal range. However, this test alone would be insufficient at inclusion or exclusion of pathology. You would need to have some background in the case to make this test result meaningful.
D-Dimers are degradation products caused by fibrinolysis. An elevated concentration of D-Dimers indicates an increase in hemostatic activity. The problem with the D-Dimer test is that it is extremely sensitive but very non-specific. D-dimers are used to screen for thrombosis, but they are elevated in a number of other situations, such as a minor infection or a wound. Hospitalised patients almost all have elevated D-dimer concentrations resucing its usefullness in the clinic.
D-Dimers also increase with age. In our hospital, we therefore use the following normal ranges for D-Dimers, depending on the age of the patient:
< 50 years <500 ug/L
51 t/m 55 years <510 ug/L
56 t/m 60 years <560 ug/L
61 t/m 65 years <610 ug/L
66 t/m 70 years <660 ug/L
71 t/m 75 years <710 ug/L
76 t/m 80 years <760 ug/L
81 t/m 85 years <810 ug/L
86 t/m 90 years <860 ug/L
91 t/m 95 years <910 ug/L
96 t/m 100 years <960 ug/L
101 t/m 105 years <1010 ug/L
Note again that D-Dimers are only useful in ruling out the presence of thrombosis. Elevated D-Dimer levels do not mean that the patient has thrombosis. This does mean that additional testing is indicated, especially if the patient shows clinical signs of thrombosis.
Did you order these test by yourself? It just shows that you shouldn;t since you don’t understand what it’s all about, about how upper limits of “normal range” should be interpreted etc.
Hb of 162 vs 160 is essentially the same, within the margin of error of the determination, so is the percentage of neutrophils 72% vs 70%. You at least should know this, otherwise ordering random tests masquerading as a annual physical examination (you did see a doc, why not ask her/him?) is totally useless, as is a well patient periodic health checks as has been shown in this 2012 paper in the British Medical Journal see General health checks in adults for reducing morbidity and mortality from disease: Cochrane systematic review and meta-analysis
General health checks did not reduce morbidity or mortality, neither overall nor for cardiovascular or cancer causes
As for the slightly elevated high sensitive CRP level, statistically in middle aged people together with the lipid profile it would point to a slightly higher risk for cardiovascular disease, since it is a measure of inflammation, and cardiovascular disease is cause by an inflammatory state, three studies to look at what it really means are underway see High-sensitivity C-reactive Protein | Lab Tests Online so at present its clinical significance has not been elucidated yet.
Normal CRP testing with results in the higher double digits has been going on for years to gauge the activity of chronic inflammations like arthritis, autoimmune diseases, vasculitis etc.
So better see your doc, and discuss whether this slightly elevated hs CRP in your case has any meaning at all.
High-sensitivity CRP (hs-CRP) along with lipid profile can be a useful test for screening the risk of CVD, heart attacks, and strokes. Studies have suggested that this test should be used for people who have a moderate risk of heart attack over the next 10 years.
Therefore, Hs-CRP is generally advised along with other tests such as lipid profile and lipoprotein-associated phospholipase A2 (Lp-PLA2) to provide added information about the risk of heart disease.
Above 10 mg/mL: indicates acute inflammation
Hs-CRP is a marker of inflammation and can increase in various other medical conditions such as chronic inflammatory conditions (rheumatological disease, lupus, vasculitis), inflammatory bowel disease, infection (such as pneumonia, tuberculosis), surgery, drug reaction, burns, oral contraceptive pill use, or trauma. Hs-CRP is not specific for predicting heart disease.
The standard CRP test measures markedly high levels of CRP to detect diseases that cause significant inflammation. It measures CRP in the range from 10 to 1000 mg/L. The high-sensitivity CRP test detects lower levels of CRP than the standard CRP test and thus helps in evaluating individuals for risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD). It measures CRP in the range from 0.5 to 10 mg/L.
I’m going to assume that there is no other source of inflammation in your body such as infection. I’m going to assume this is a general systematic level of CRP in your body:
That level of CRP is not good. You need to take steps to lower inflammation in your body. According to Harvard Medical School anything over 3 is high. Read that last link twice, it’s really that good.
So, the first thing to do is cut sugar out of your diet. Even low to moderate amounts of sugar sweetened beverages significantly increases CRP in healthy young men.
You may want to consider drugs that are anti-inflammatory. The easiest are doses of aspirin. As much as I generally loathe the drugs, you may want to consider taking statins.
I can tell you from personal experience that the ketogenic diet is good. It has been studied and shown to reduce inflammation in the body. I’ve been doing it for 3 years and my last CRP was 1.6.