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Interleukin-6 (IL-6) is a pro-inflammatory cytokine, which is a protein that helps in the regulation of the body’s immune responses. The protein acts on different types of cells and tissues in the body and promotes the differentiation of white blood cells, promotes cell growth for particular types of cells and inhibits it for others. An IL-6 test is performed as a marker of activation of the immune system and can help identify infection, inflammation, autoimmune disorders, cardiovascular diseases, etc.
The interleukin-6 test (IL-6 test) is performed to measure the amount of interleukin in the blood and is a marker for the activation of the immune system. The test is performed to evaluate and monitor the inflammatory responses of the body associated with COVID-19 and other infections, autoimmunity disorders, and different types of cancers. Elevated IL-6 levels may be indicative of an inflammatory response and that the patient may need more supportive care.
The IL-6 is a blood test prescribed to patients who show symptoms of suffering from infections, autoimmune disorders, cardiovascular illnesses, etc. as it acts as a marker for the body’s inflammatory response. It is also prescribed to COVID-19 patients who are showing symptoms like difficulty in breathing, cough (with or without blood), pain, swelling, increased heart rate, redness and/or tenderness in the limbs, etc.
The normal test range for the IL-6 test or the Interleukin-6 test lies between 0-5.9 pg/ml. High levels of the protein in the IL-6 test report mean that the infected person faces a higher risk of mortality. Elevated levels also indicate increased severity of COVID-19 induced pneumonia and the need for additional ventilation and medical support.
No. There is no specific preparation that is required before getting the Interleukin-6 test performed. Even fasting, which is one of the most common preparations for most diagnostic tests, is not required as fasting does not affect the interleukin-6 levels. A small amount of blood is taken as a sample for the test. The interleukin-6 test is useful for monitoring the inflammatory responses in people who have been affected by COVID-19 and for the evaluation of infections, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, autoimmune disorders, etc.
The interleukin-6 test is used as a non-specific marker for evaluating a patient’s inflammatory response. It is not a diagnostic test for specific diseases. High interleukin-6 levels indicate an inflammatory response but cannot explain why. In case the IL-6 report shows elevated numbers the result must be evaluated for the specific patient, based on their health condition and history. In case you have high interleukin-6 levels, you must visit your doctor for a proper diagnosis.
A blood sample is collected for the interleukin-6 test for COVID-19 patients. The expert technicians at Max Lab ensure complete safety and follow proper sanitisation precautions like wearing a mask/PPE kit, sanitised equipment, etc. while collecting the sample. In the sample collection procedure, a tourniquet is placed tightly on the upper arm and the patient is asked to make a fist to help with blood build-up. The skin will be cleaned to prevent bacteria from entering and a needle will be inserted into the vein to collect the blood.
The cost of an IL-6 test will vary with the panel you choose. At Max Lab, we offer a total of 5 panels for the IL-6 test:
At Max Lab, the report for the IL-6 test is generated within 24 hours after sample collection. Once generated, you can also check your report online.
An IL-6 blood test panel in COVID-19 is recommended for patients who show severe symptoms like cough with blood (or even without), breathing difficulties, swelling, etc. The test acts as a biomarker that helps in determining the level of disease progression. High levels of Interleukin-6 in your bloodstream indicate an active COVID-19 infection and are generally associated with pulmonary inflammation and extensive lung damage. The test can help doctors evaluate the need for additional ventilation or medical support.
IL-6 test Panels are groups of specific components that are used for detecting inflammation in a person’s body. This blood test is useful for evaluating the responsiveness of the immune system in people suffering from COVID-19. The accuracy and reliability of the IL-6 Test panels have made them the ideal diagnostic procedures for detecting severe inflammatory responses in patients with coronavirus disease. Max Lab offers online booking for IL-6 test panels for a comprehensive understanding of this viral infection.
Mentioned below are the five IL-6 blood test panels available at Max Lab:
When an individual has an inflammatory response due to COVID-19, the concentration of IL-6 increases drastically. This is the main reason why medical practitioners recommend the IL-6 test in COVID-19 positive cases. Highly-experienced lab technicians examine the plasma within the first 24 hours after sample collection.
Need for Getting an IL-6 Test
IL-6 is a biomarker for COVID-19 as it detects severe inflammatory response in various organs such as lungs, kidneys, liver, etc. Early detection of a serious infection with the IL-6 test helps in ensuring intensive monitoring for COVID positive patients. This is especially useful for people who experience decreasing levels of oxygen saturation during COVID.
D-Dimer, CBC, and several other tests included in IL-6 test panels help in providing a comprehensive report about the immune status of a patient with COVID-19. In case of any abnormalities in the test results, please consult a physician to identify the right course of action.