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Cold Agglutinins

Serum cryoglobulin assays are used to evaluate patients with vasculitis, glomerulonephritis and lymphoproliferative diseases as well as to evaluate patients with macroglobulinemia or myeloma and who have specific symptoms during cold exposure.

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Cryoglobulins or cryoagglutinins are antibodies that are capable of adhering (forming agglomerates) to human O blood cells in the cold (at <20°C) but not at room temperature or at higher temperatures. Cryoglobulins are found in very small quantities in the blood of many people and react at very low temperatures (below 4°C). Elevated levels of cryoglobulins may be present in the serum of patients following infections. Their presence and activity at temperatures below 20°C are called "broad spectrum" cryoglobulins. The presence of cryoglobulins can cause adhesions or aggregates, which can lead to thrombosis, extremity pain and hemolysis.

This test is indicated when other blood tests are suspected of presenting cryoglobulins. It can also be performed to investigate hemolytic anemia or to investigate conditions such as painful cold extremities (Raynaud's) or other similar reactions to the cold, such as surgery. The Cryoglobulins detected in various pathological conditions such as autoimmune hemolytic anemia, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, B-cell lymphoma, T cell lymphomas, Hodgkin, lymphocytic leukemia, myelodysplastic syndrome, multiple myeloma, systemic lupus erythematosus, scleroderma, varicella, infectious mononucleosis, a viral pneumonia, in Mycoplasma pneumonia, trypanosomiasis and uterine sarcoma.

Positive results require immunoblotting and immunoglobulin standardization.

 

 

Important Note

Laboratory test results are the most important parameter for the diagnosis and monitoring of all pathological conditions. 70%-80% of diagnostic decisions are based on laboratory tests. Correct interpretation of laboratory results allows a doctor to distinguish "healthy" from "diseased".

Laboratory test results should not be interpreted from the numerical result of a single analysis. Test results should be interpreted in relation to each individual case and family history, clinical findings and the results of other laboratory tests and information. Your personal physician should explain the importance of your test results.

At Diagnostiki Athinon we answer any questions you may have about the test you perform in our laboratory and we contact your doctor to get the best possible medical care.

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