Parameter of the Month: hs-CRP

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hs-CRP

What is hsCRP?

High sensitivity C-Reactive Protein better known as ‘hs-CRP’ is a serum biomarker of inflammation and the hs – CRP test specifically quantitates its levels.

What is the difference between CRP and hs-CRP?

As a biomarker, both are recommended to assess inflammation. However, CRP in most cases is tested in individuals who are affected by some inflammatory conditions, while hs- CRP test with its high sensitivity is tested for in healthy individuals to assess their risk factor, especially for cardiovascular diseases. The sensitivity and range for both tests in different. This test is generally recommended with the cardiac markers profile which measures all other conventional analytes.

What all heart conditions can hs-CRP predict?

Hs-CRP levels can indicate risk for a myriad of health conditions like:

  • Myocardial infarction
  • Cardiovascular related death
  • Stroke (ischemic stroke)
  • Peripheral artery diseases
  • Presence of narrowed blood vessels (Restenosis)

Why hs-CRP?

While various cholesterol indicators, such as HDL and LDL levels, predict the risk of many cardiovascular diseases, hsCRP levels are known to specifically highlight inflammation in the arteries, if any. Healthy individuals with elevated hs-CRP levels are hypothesized to have a 23-fold higher risk of cardiovascular disease, a widely used primary intervention.

What are the clinical range and what do they signify?

Lower risk : <1.0 mg/L

Average risk: 1 – 3 mg/L

High risk : > 3 mg/L

Values >3.0 mg/L predict a possibility of developing ischemic event or cardiovascular diseases.

What can affect hs-CRP levels in blood?

  • Treatment with NSAIDs and anti-inflammatory agents can cause a reduction in their levels
  • Women on hormone replacement therapy tend to show values on the higher side

Hence, the general recommendation to measure hs-CRP levels in healthy individuals to be a true marker to assess cardiac risk.

We at Thyrocare, provide hs-CRP testing services along with many other important cardiac markers using state-of-the-art automation which works under the principle of Nephelometry.