GLUCOSE is a blood sugar. Elevated levels can indicate diabetes mellitus, but in cats, mildly elevated levels can also just indicate stress. Low levels can happen with insulin shock or malabsorption syndromes and can cause weakness, seizures, or death.
SERUM UREA NITROGEN (also known as Blood Urea Nitrogen) generally indicates kidney function. An increased level is called azotemia, and can be caused by kidney, liver, and heart disease, urethral obstruction, shock, and dehydration.
SERUM CREATININE is a more specific indicator of kidney function in cats, although it can also be affected by dehydration and urethral obstruction. An increased level without dehydration or urethral obstruction generally indicates kidney disease.
URIC ACID is a nonspecific value in cats, and does not indicate any disease processes.
ALT (Alanine aminotransferase) is a sensitive indicator of active liver damage but doesn’t indicate the cause.
TOTAL BILIRUBIN elevations may indicate liver or hemolytic (red blood cell destruction)disease. This test helps identify bile duct problems in the liver and certain types of anemia.
DIRECT BILIRUBIN elevations are another indication of liver disease and hemolysis.
ALKALINE PHOSPHATASE elevations may indicate liver damage or can also be a result of active bone growth in young kittens. In adult cats,this is especially significant for liver damage.
LACTIC DEHYDROGENASE elevations are very nonspecific and can indicate cell destruction to liver cells, muscle cells, heart cells, and red blood cells.
AST (Asparate aminotransferase) increases are also very nonspecific, and can indicate liver, heart, or skeletal muscle damage.
INDIRECT BILIRUBIN is calculated using the total bilirubin and the direct bilirubin, and is not significant as a diagnostic test.
BUN/CREAT RATIO is calculated using the serum urea nitrogen and the serum creatinine. In some cases, this result can help indicate if azotemia is from dehydration or kidney disease.
CHOLESTEROL is used to supplement diagnosis of hypothyroidism, liver disease, Cushing’s disease, and diabetes mellitus. This is not a prognostic factor for heart disease such as in people.
TRIGLYCERIDES are not a significant value in cats. They can be elevated if the cat has eaten recently, or in some disease processes, but are not a significant diagnostic factor.
CALCIUM deviations can indicate a variety of diseases. Tumors, hyperparathyroidism, kidney disease, and low albumin are just a few of the conditions that alter serum calcium.
PHOSPHORUS elevations are often associated with significant kidney disease, hyperthyroidism, and bleeding disorders.
SODIUM is an electrolyte lost with vomiting, diarrhea, and kidney and Addison’s disease. This test helps indicate hydration status.
POTASSIUM is an electrolyte lost with vomiting, diarrhea, or excessive urination. Decreased levels can be an early indicator of kidney insufficiency. Increased levels may indicate Addison’s disease, dehydration and urethral obstruction. High levels can lead to cardiac arrest.
CHLORIDE is an electrolyte often lost with vomiting and Addison’s disease. Elevations often indicate dehydration.
SERUM PROTEIN indicates hydration status and provides additional information about the liver,kidneys, and infectious diseases.
SERUM ALBUMIN is a protein that helps evaluate hydration, hemorrhage, and intestinal, liver, and kidney disease.
GLOBULIN is calculated from serum total protein and serum albumin. This is a blood protein that often increases with chronic inflammation and certain disease states.
OSMOLALITY CALCULATEDis a calculated indicator of hydration status, and can help with interpretation of other blood values.
T4 (ANIMAL THYROXINE) is a thyroid hormone. Decreased levels in cats do not signal hypothyroidism, rather, they can indicate an underlying disease process. Elevated levels indicate hyperthyroidism.