What is a Guthrie test?

Published by Anaya Cole on

What is a Guthrie test?

The Guthrie test, also called the PKU test, is a diagnostic tool to test infants for phenylketonuria a few days after birth. To administer the Guthrie test, doctors use Guthrie cards to collect capillary blood from an infant’s heel, and the cards are saved for later testing.

How does PKU test work?

For accurate results, the test is done after your baby is 24 hours old and after your baby has had some protein in the diet. A nurse or lab technician collects a few drops of blood from your baby’s heel. A laboratory tests the blood sample for certain metabolic disorders, including PKU .

What is PKU testing and why is it important?

A PKU screening test is a blood test given to newborns 24–72 hours after birth. PKU stands for phenylketonuria, a rare disorder that prevents the body from properly breaking down a substance called phenylalanine (Phe). Phe is part of proteins that are found in many foods and in an artificial sweetener called aspartame.

How is cystic fibrosis diagnosed?

Cystic Fibrosis Diagnosis Most people are diagnosed with CF at birth with newborn screening, or before 2 years of age. A doctor who sees the symptoms of CF will order a sweat test or a genetic test to confirm the diagnosis. A sweat test is the most common test used to diagnose CF. It is a painless test.

What is a normal PKU level?

Normal levels of phenylalanine in the blood are less than 2 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL). More than 4 mg/dL of phenylalanine in the blood is considered high and may mean your child has PKU.

What does PKU mean?

Phenylketonuria (also called PKU) is a condition in which your body can’t break down an amino acid called phenylalanine. Amino acids help build protein in your body. Without treatment, phenylalanine builds up in the blood and causes health problems.

What are other names for PKU?

Phenylketonuria (fen-ul-key-toe-NU-ree-uh), also called PKU, is a rare inherited disorder that causes an amino acid called phenylalanine to build up in the body.

Why is blood spot screening important?

The blood spot screening test means that babies with sickle cell disease can receive early treatment to help them live healthier lives. This may include vaccinations and antibiotics to prevent serious illnesses. Pregnant women are also routinely tested for sickle cell disease early in pregnancy.

What is a positive PKU test?

Positive phenylketonuria (PKU) test: The test looks for phenylalanine levels in the blood, which should be less than 2 mg/dL. A blood phenylalanine level of more than 4 mg/dL is considered excessive and could indicate that the child has PKU.

What is the purpose of phenylalanine?

Function: The essential amino acid L-phenylalanine (Phe) is needed for the synthesis of proteins, catecholamines, and melanin; it is also an important precursor of the amino acid L-tyrosine (Tyr).

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