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Procedure, Preparation and Risks Involved In Activated Partial Thromboplastin Time (APTT) Test

Submitted on March 27, 2012

Activated Partial Thromboplastin Time Test (APTT)

This is a blood test to measure the kind of time blood takes to clot. Activated partial thromboplastin time range is generally used to check if the person has bleeding problems.

  • Twelve factors of clotting are needed for the blood to coagulate.The activated partial thromboplastin time level test is important because it is necessary to know how long your blood needs to clot.
  • If you have been taking blood-thinning medicines like heparin. The activated partial thromboplastin time test or (APTT) is best for this.
  • The test is done to check if a person's blood clotting is on a low level.
  • With this test a doctor can check of the clotting factor or one of the factors has changed.
  • If there is a complete absence of clotting.
  • The activated partial thromboplastin time level test can be done to check if substances known as inhibitors are affecting the blood clotting.
  • If more clotting factors have been used.
  • Prothrombin time or PT is another blood clotting test that measures clotting factors. This test is done with partial thromboplastin time test to check if the person has bleeding problems due to clotting factors.

Reasons Why It is Conducted

This test is done to check the following:

  • To check why there has been abnormal bruising or bleeding.
  • To check the level of blood clotting as well as the clotting factors in case a person has some bleeding disorders.
  • The test is used to analyze the causes behind clotting problems.
  • This test is essential for patients who are going in for surgery. The surgeon has to know the blood clotting period prior to the operation.
  • The tests can ascertain if the dosage of the anti-clotting medication given to a patient is correct.
  • The APTT test can be done to check the dosage if medicines that can thin the blood.

Preparation

To prepare for this test, you just need to tell your doctor the medicines that you've been taking as various medicines can alter the outcome of the test.

Procedure

A health care expert will draw blood and then test it.

Risks Involved

There is very little risk in a simple blood test. If the test is done by a healthcare expert, who knows his/her job, and follows the right procedure and uses a clean needle, then there isn't much you should worry about. You might feel a pinch when the needle is inserted and you may have a small bruise in the area. You might feel sore in that area for a short while.

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