Information About Hemoglobin Electrophoresis Test

Submitted on March 27, 2012

Hemoglobin is one of the important agents of human blood. Hemoglobin is used in the blood to help with the process of oxygen transportation. Oxygen, as we know, is needed for the metabolic processes in the human body. A lack of hemoglobin leads to oxygen deprivation related conditions. There are a number of different types of hemoglobin in the human body. Some of these are present in healthy individuals while others may be present in those who are suffering from some sort of deficiency or abnormality.

Hemoglobin Electrophoresis Test

Hemoglobin electrophoresis is a type of blood test procedure that is conducted to determine the nature and quantity of hemoglobin present in an individual's blood. As with all blood tests, hemoglobin electrophoresis involves the collection of blood from an individual, usually from a vein in the upper forearm. The blood collection procedure usually takes less than a minute and is virtually painless. Some people may be uncomfortable with the pin prick and with the collection of blood. There is no preparation required by the patient for the hemoglobin electrophoresis test.

The main aim of the hemoglobin electrophoresis procedure is to identify the various types of hemoglobin in the blood. These types of hemoglobin are named alphabetically. Hemoglobin F, for example, is found in fetuses and is usually replaced. Hemoglobin A is the normal type of hemoglobin found in an individual's body.

There are a few different conditions that might occur which would damage the hemoglobin in the body or lead to the production of abnormal hemoglobin. These conditions include thalassemia and sickle cell disease. There are also a number of different types of abnormal hemoglobin.

Patterns, Results and Interpretation

The hemoglobin electrophoresis patterns followed during hemoglobin electrophoresis takes place in a laboratory. The laboratory technician will use various equipments to differentiate the types of hemoglobin present. The report will then be given to the doctor. Once the hemoglobin electrophoresis results are available, they are subjected to interpretation. Based on the values found during the test, the hemoglobin electrophoresis interpretation will be done by the doctor. During this interpretation, the doctor will match the laboratory hemoglobin electrophoresis results with the symptoms that the patient is suffering from. Often, the symptoms are quite vague and difficult to understand. When the patient's hemoglobin electrophoresis results are presented, it helps the doctor make much more sense of the condition that is affecting the patient. Some of these conditions are genetic whereas others are treatable. For a hemoglobin electrophoresis during pregnancy you would need to speak to your doctor and get an approval. This is of prime importance.