A magnesium test is used to measure the level of magnesium in the blood. Abnormal levels of magnesium are most frequently seen in conditions or diseases that cause impaired or excessive excretion of magnesium by the kidneys, or by conditions that cause impaired absorption in the intestines. Magnesium levels may be checked as part of an evaluation of the severity of kidney problems and/or of uncontrolled diabetes and may help in the diagnosis of gastrointestinal disorders.
Since a low magnesium blood level can, over time, cause persistently low calcium and potassium levels, it may be checked to help diagnose problems with calcium, potassium, phosphorus, and/or parathyroid hormone – another component of calcium regulation.
Magnesium testing may be ordered as a follow-up to chronically low blood levels of calcium and potassium. It also may be ordered when a person has symptoms that may be due to a magnesium deficiency, such as:
- muscle weakness
- twitching, cramping, confusion
- cardiac arrhythmias
When someone has a kidney disorder or uncontrolled diabetes, a magnesium test may be ordered periodically, along with kidney function tests such as a BUN and creatinine, to help monitor kidney function and to make sure that the person is not excreting or retaining excessive amounts of magnesium.
For more information on this test, visit labtestsonline.org
No preparation needed