Blood contains different types of proteins that help in various functions of the body. Of these many types of proteins, albumin and globulin are the two major groups of protein found in blood. Albumin helps in preventing blood from leaking out of the blood vessels and globulin has an important part in the immune system. Albumin is made exclusively in the liver and globulin is formed in many sites within the body. In order to evaluate liver function, a total protein or albumin globulin ratio test is carried out. Increase, decrease or normal albumin globulin ratio helps in determining the reasons for liver problems, if any.
Albumin globulin ratio or A/G ratio is a blood test, where the albumin value is divided by the globulin value. It is used to evaluate different liver diseases, kidney diseases as well as check the nutritional status of a patient. If a person experiences unexplained weight loss, fatigue or shows symptoms of liver diseases or kidney disorder, he or she is asked to take total protein or albumin globulin ratio test. The person needs to give a blood sample that is drawn from the vein in the arm by a phlebotomist. This blood sample is used to evaluate the ratio.
Albumin Globulin Normal Range
The A/G ratio normal range is slightly over 1, that is, 0.8 - 2.0. In a total protein test, all the proteins in the plasma are measured, especially albumin and globulin. The albumin globulin ratio is calculated using the values obtained by direct measurement of total protein and albumin.
High Albumin Globulin Ratio
A high A/G ratio is used to indicate under production of immunoglobulins. This condition is seen due to presence of some genetic disorders, hypothyroidism, high protein/high carbohydrate diet, Glucocorticoid excess, low levels of globulin (hypogammaglobulinemia) and leukemia.
Low Albumin Globulin Ratio
It indicates overproduction of globulins in conditions like multiple myeloma and in some autoimmune diseases. It also indicate under production of albumin in conditions like liver cirrhosis and nephrotic syndrome.
High Protein Levels
The high protein levels in a total protein test indicate many diseases and conditions. These include multiple myeloma, chronic inflammation, or infection (which includes HIV, hepatitis B and C) and bone marrow disorders.
Low Protein Levels
Low protein levels indicate malabsorption, malnutrition, liver disease, bleeding, celiac disease, inflammatory bowel disease, etc.
If the doctor finds its high or low ratio, he may advice further tests like albumin levels, liver enzyme test, serum protein electrophoresis, etc. You should speak to your doctor regarding your blood test reports. He will able to diagnose whether or not any serious condition is affecting your health. Do not take any health condition lightly. Always speak to your doctor for any doubts you have related to your health.