Ferritin Blood Test Facts
- The ferritin test measures the level of ferritin, the major iron storage protein in the body.
- The ferritin test is a simple blood test.
- High levels of ferritin can indicate an iron storage disorder, such as hemochromatosis, or a chronic disease process.
- Low levels of ferritin are indicative of iron deficiency, which causes anemia (a reduction in the number of red blood cells).
What is ferritin?
Ferritin is the major iron storage protein of the body. Ferritin levels can be used to indirectly measure the iron levels in the body. Ferritin has the shape of a hollow sphere that permits the entry of a variable amount of iron for storage (as ferric hydroxide phosphate complexes).
What is the ferritin blood test?
The ferritin test uses venous blood that is withdrawn as for any routine blood test. No special preparation for the test is necessary.
The test is sometimes ordered together with other tests to help evaluate the body's iron stores, such as an iron level or a total iron binding capacity test.
What are normal results for a ferritin test?
The results may vary slightly among laboratories, but in general, normal ferritin levels are 12-300 nanograms per milliliter of blood (ng/mL) for males and 12-150 ng/mL for females.