Esr Blood Test - The Detector Of Causes Of Inflammation In A Human Body

An ESR Blood Test or Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate Test aids in the detection of reasons behind the cause of inflammation in a person. The test doesn't really helps in diagnosing the existence of a specific disease or infection in the body but complements other tests ordered by a physician to understand the cause of inflammation. The tests ordered depend upon the types of symptoms experienced by an individual.

What does an ESR Blood Test Monitors?

The test helps in screening inflammatory conditions in the body, such as rheumatoid arthritis or systemic lupus erythematosus. It can be useful in detecting conditions that are a cause of inflammation, such as autoimmune diseases, infections and some types of cancers. A physician may also order this test if an individual suffers from fever, has some type of arthritis, or experiences certain muscle problems.

How is an ESR Blood Test Performed?

As the name suggests, it's a kind of blood test wherein a sample of blood is drawn from one of the veins of the body, normally those nestled near the elbow or the back of the hand. Post the collection of blood in a test tube, the sample is sent to the laboratory for testing and analysis. In the case of an ESR Blood Test for cancer, it's quite possible that the patient may have to spare more blood samples than usual.

It's important to note that there are certain medications which can hinder with the tests results and hence, must be stopped temporarily, but only after the consent of the doctor. Medications include:-

  • Androgens, such as testosterone, estrogens, etc.
  • Aspirin, when taken in high doses
  • Divalproex sodium
  • Phenothiazines
  • Valproic acid
  • Methadone
  • Prednisone
  • Phenytoin
  • Heroin
ESR Blood Test Results

The ESR blood test normal range majorly depends upon the age group an individual belongs to.

  • Women below 50 years - less than or equal to 20 mm/hr
  • Women above 50 years - less than or equal to 30 mm/hr
  • Men below 50 years - less than or equal to 15 mm/hr
  • Men above 50 years - less than or equal to 20 mm/hr
  • New born babies - less than or equal to 2 mm/hr
  • Children who have reached puberty - between 3 and 13 mm/hr.
Abnormal ESR Blood Test range, however, may be due to the prevalence of the below-mentioned diseases, conditions or infections in the body.

An Individual may have a high ESR level in case of:-

  • anemia
  • thyroid disease
  • disease in the kidneys
  • lymphoma
  • multiple myeloma
  • pregnancy
  • temporal arteritis
  • old age
  • Waldenstrom's macroglobulinemia
  • certain types of arthritis
On the contrary, a person may have lower levels of ESR in the blood because of the presence of conditions such as:-

  • hypofibrinogenemia
  • low plasma protein
  • congestive heart failure
  • leukocytosis
  • sickle cell anemia
  • polycythemia
How to reduce ESR in blood?

There are certain essential things that one can do to reduce the levels of ESR in the blood. This typically involves quitting smoking, taking up exercise on a regular basis, shrinking one's waist size, sleeping enough, steering away from stress and eating a healthy diet that certainly excludes foods that aid in escalating levels of ESR in blood.