Hormones are essential for the smooth functioning of the human body. Aldosterone is a hormone that is responsible for maintaining your blood pressure and urinary excretion.
What is Aldosterone?
Aldosterone is a hormone produced by the adrenal gland and is responsible for maintaining water and salt balance in your body. It is released due to the action of ACTH, another hormone produced by the pituitary gland. Aldosterone increases water and salt retention by acting on the kidney through various mechanisms. It consequently also increases the BP and may cause slight weight gain.
Why is Aldosterone suggested?
Aldosterone may be suggested if you are experiencing the following symptoms:
- Excessive or lack of urination
- General weakness and dehydration
- Low/High BP
How is Aldosterone performed?
Aldosterone testing is a fairly simple procedure.
- It requires simple blood sampling and testing.
- After taking the sample, the blood and the serum are separated.
- The serum sample then gets tested and aldosterone levels are checked.
Testing of electrolytes may be done with Aldosterone better correlation.
What are the parameters measured in Aldosterone?
Aldosterone levels considered normal are:
- Around 2-9 ng/dl.
- The electrolytes measured along with it are:
(a) Sodium (135-145 mmol/L)
(b) Potassium (3.5-5.5mmol/L)
Preparation before performing Aldosterone
Aldosterone testing requires the following preparation:
- Avoid high salt foods & sugary drinks and consume adequate water
- Adequate rest before the sampling is suggested and you may be asked to lie down for 15-20 mins before it.
No special post care for Aldosterone testing is required.
Sample types in Aldosterone
Aldosterone testing requires taking the blood sample. This could be:
- Drawing blood from the vein in your arm
- In certain cases, blood from the renal or adrenal vein may be taken.
Side effects/ risks of Aldosterone
Aldosterone is an essential hormone and there are no side effects of testing. However, a low salt diet and regular testing to keep the levels accurate are advised.