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Laboratory: Clinical Biochemistry  (SENDOUTS)
Test Name:
Test Code: CARO
Clinical Information:
Normal or high levels rule out fat malabsorption.  Low levels are correlated with steatorrhea, but lack specificity.  Serum carotene concentrations vary widely and are influenced by the nature and quantity of dietary carotenoids.  Not all carotenoids in serum have provitamin A activity.
Elevated serum carotene levels are frequently found in infants and in hypothyroid individuals and result from inability of the liver to convert carotenes to vitamin A.  Other causes are excessive dietary intake and hyperlipemia associated with diabetes mellitus or hyperlipoproteinemia.
Patient Preparation: Fasting overnight (12-14 hours). Infants - Draw prior to next feeding. Water can be taken as needed.
Collection Devices:
Protect specimen from light by wrapping in aluminum foil.
Specimen Required:
Serum: 2.0 mL
Pediatric Serum: 0.7 mL

Collection Information: Separate serum from cells and freeze within 2 hours of collection.
A fasting specimen is recommended. It should be collected in the morning due to circadian rhythm.
Specimen Stability: 
Ambient: 72 hours
Refrigerated: 7 days
Frozen: 30 days 
Reference Values:
0 - 8 months: Not established
9 months - 6 years: 5 – 80 mcg/dL
7 - 17 years: 9 – 190 mcg/dL
Males ≥ 18 years: 4 - 51 mcg/dL
Females ≥ 18 years: 6 - 77 mcg/dL

Method of Analysis: High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC)
Within 4 Weeks
See Also:
More Information:
Store and send frozen to HSC Clinical Biochemistry - MS5 to be forwarded to In-Common Laboratories for testing.
In Common Lab test ID: CAROQST S