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How is an immunoglobulin test done?

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Doctors often measure IgA, IgG, and IgM together to get a snapshot of your immune function. A lab tech will usually take a sample of your blood by inserting a needle into a vein in your arm. The blood collects into a tube or vial.

Another way to do this test is with a sample of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), the substance that surrounds your brain and spinal cord. The doctor will take a sample of this fluid with a lumbar puncture (often called a “spinal tap”).

For this, you go to an outpatient facility or a hospital. A technician will give you a shot in your back to help numb any pain.

You will likely lie on your side with your knees pulled up to your chest, or you sit on a table. The technician inserts a hollow needle between two vertebrae in your lower spine and removes a small amount of fluid so it can be tested.

From: What Is an Immunoglobulin Test? WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

American Association for Clinical Chemistry: "Quantitative Immunoglobulins: At a Glance," "Quantitative Immunoglobulins: Test Sample," "Quantitative Immunoglobulins: The Test."

Mayo Clinic: "Lumbar puncture (spinal tap): What you can expect."

Nemours Foundation: "Blood Test: Immunoglobulins (IgA, IgG, IgM)."

Pagana, Kathleen Deska. , 2016. Mosby's Diagnostic and Laboratory Test Reference

University of Rochester Medical Center: "Quantitative Immunoglobulins."

Reviewed by Melinda Ratini on August 9, 2019

SOURCES:

American Association for Clinical Chemistry: "Quantitative Immunoglobulins: At a Glance," "Quantitative Immunoglobulins: Test Sample," "Quantitative Immunoglobulins: The Test."

Mayo Clinic: "Lumbar puncture (spinal tap): What you can expect."

Nemours Foundation: "Blood Test: Immunoglobulins (IgA, IgG, IgM)."

Pagana, Kathleen Deska. , 2016. Mosby's Diagnostic and Laboratory Test Reference

University of Rochester Medical Center: "Quantitative Immunoglobulins."

Reviewed by Melinda Ratini on August 9, 2019

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What other tests might be needed in addition to an immunoglobulin test?

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