Renal & Hepatic

The renal panel includes assays of urea nitrogen (BUN) and creatinine. Urea nitrogen may fluctuate based on daily activity and dietary considerations. Creatinine, normally in a fairly steady state, will gradually increase into the abnormal level with renal dysfunction or damage. The serum levels of BUN and creatinine are primary indicators of kidney dysfunction. Should these tests be abnormal, a 24-hour urine assessment would be recommended. Creatinine clearance, a component of a 24-hour urine assessment has been considered one of the best indicators of renal function.

Hepatic function indicators are divided into protein and enzyme assessments. Levels of total protein, albumin and globulin provide dietary and nutritional intake data, and indicate overall hepatic functionality. Globulin and A/G ratio can be indicative of immune response to infection. Elevated enzymes indicate damage to the hepatic cells due to drug, chemical or alcohol ingestion and may be associated with bacterial infection affecting the liver. Increases in the ALT and the AST levels are consistent with acute or chronic hepatic damage.