The magnesium blood test measures the level of magnesium in the blood. Magnesium plays a central role in over 300 metabolic reactions in the body. These reactions impact many important body processes like protein synthesis, stabilization of cells, DNA synthesis, nerve signal transmission, bone metabolism, conduction of signals between muscles and nerves, and more. Getting enough magnesium is important for maintaining good health. So, it’s essential to eat plenty of magnesium-rich foods or take a supplement when you’re unable to get enough from diet alone. However, when magnesium levels are too high or too low in your blood it can be a sign of a serious health problem.
Typically, low magnesium is due to decreased absorption of magnesium in the gut or increased excretion of magnesium in the urine. Otherwise, low levels in healthy people are uncommon. Hypermagnesemia occurs when too much magnesium circulates in the blood. However, hypermagnesemia is rare and is usually caused by poor kidney function or renal failure.
This article covers all the significant topics related to the magnesium blood test such as the test cost, symptoms, preparation for tests, risk factor, and how to get tested for a magnesium blood test.
- What is a magnesium blood test?
- Purpose of magnesium blood test
- Symptoms of low & high magnesium levels
- How should you prepare for a magnesium blood test?
- What happens during the magnesium blood test?
- Risk of this test
- What do the results mean?
- Provider locations
For our readers who are interested in knowing the magnesium blood test cost beforehand, we begin with that section.
How much does the magnesium blood test cost?
Magnesium blood test costs range from $28 to $50 in different labs and facilities across the US. Prior appointment isn’t required. You can order tests online by comparing the price or visiting the nearest lab during lab business hours. You will get the results in your email in 2 to 3 business days after completing the procedure. Apart from this, doctor consultation is available for any kind of further treatment or medical advice.
The table below shows the magnesium blood test provider and their prices. You can know more and book the test by clicking on the “Book Now” button. All the labs are certified and offer a network across the US.
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Magnesium blood test cost with insurance
Many insurance companies in the U.S. cover all the vital tests like a magnesium blood test. However, the coverage provided by private health insurance companies and national health insurance programs like Medicare varies widely. Most of the health insurance policies cover magnesium blood test costs only once or twice a year and when your physician orders more than twice in a year, you should pay the test cost out of pocket. So, you are recommended to check if your health insurance policy covers the magnesium blood test cost.
Our magnesium blood testing providers do not accept any kind of health insurance policy. However, they can provide you with an itemized receipt containing all the details viz the name of the test, code of the test, and CPT code which is necessary for insurance reimbursement purposes.
What is a magnesium blood test?
Magnesium is the 4th most abundant mineral and it is needed for more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body. Magnesium is also a type of electrolyte. These electrolytes are electrically charged minerals in the body. Magnesium helps to maintain normal nerve & muscle function, keeps the heartbeat steady, helps bones remain strong, and supports a healthy immune system. It also helps to control blood sugar and blood pressure.
A magnesium blood test measures the level of magnesium in your blood. Your body’s magnesium is mostly found in the bones and cells. And a small amount is found in the blood. When magnesium levels are too high or too low it can be a sign of a serious health problem. Sometimes, the magnesium blood test is also included with tests of other electrolytes like sodium, calcium, potassium, and chloride.
It is also known as Mg, Mag, Magnesium-Serum.
Purpose of magnesium blood test
Your doctor may order a magnesium blood test if they suspect your magnesium level is too high or too low. The magnesium blood test may be necessary if your doctor thinks you might have a malabsorption or malnutrition problem. And you may need this test regularly if you have diabetes, kidney problems, chronic diarrhea, or take certain medications. Additionally, you may need a magnesium blood test if you are pregnant. Because magnesium deficiency can also be a sign of preeclampsia, which is a serious form of high blood pressure that affects pregnant women. As magnesium plays a role in regulating calcium & potassium levels, you may need this test if you have chronic low calcium and potassium levels.
Apart from this, your doctors may order this test if you have symptoms of low magnesium or high magnesium levels.
Levels that are too low are known as hypomagnesemia (magnesium deficiency). And levels that are too high, are called hypermagnesemia.
Symptoms of low magnesium may include:
- Loss of appetite
- Muscle cramps or twitching
- Muscle spasticity
- Personality changes
- Abnormal heart rhythms
- Seizures (in severe cases)
Symptoms of high magnesium may include:
- Muscle weakness
- Nausea and vomiting
- Trouble breathing
- Neurological impairment
- Abnormally low blood pressure (hypotension)
And high levels in the blood can also lead to heart problems. In severe cases, it can also result in a coma.
How should you prepare for a magnesium blood test?
In general, you don’t need to take any special measures to prepare for this magnesium blood test. However, when your doctor asks you to do so, follow their instructions. Be sure to tell your doctor about any prescription and over-the-counter medicines you’re taking, before the test. Your doctor may ask you to stop taking certain medications. And you need to stop taking magnesium supplements before the test.
What happens during the magnesium blood test?
Before drawing the blood sample, your health care professional or nurse will clean the area with an antiseptic to kill any germs. And they will tie a band around the upper arm, to make the veins swell with blood. Once a vein is found, they will insert a sterile needle into it. And the blood is drawn into a tube attached to the needle. You may feel some minor pain during a blood draw. After drawing blood, the health care professional will remove the needle and place a bandage over the puncture site. Typically, this blood test takes only a few minutes.
Risk of this test
There is little risk in having a magnesium blood test. You may have slight bleeding, minor pain, in the area where the needle was inserted. However, these symptoms go away quickly.
What do the results mean?
The normal range is 1.7 to 2.3 milligrams per deciliter. Some labs use different measurements or may also test different samples. The normal value may vary slightly among different labs. So, it’s important to consult your doctor to interpret your specific results.
If you have a magnesium deficiency, it can be a sign of:
- Digestive disorders – Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis
- Chronic diarrhea
- Hemodialysis (a mechanical way to filter waste products from the blood)
- Preeclampsia (in pregnant women)
- Heavy periods
- Ongoing use of diuretics
- Severe burns
- Excessive sweating
Additionally, low levels can also indicate that you aren’t eating enough foods containing magnesium.
High levels may result from taking too many supplements or from a problem with excreting extra magnesium. When you have a higher-than-normal amount of magnesium, it may be a sign of:
- Dehydration (loss of too much bodily fluids)
- Addison disease
- Kidney disease
- Diabetic ketoacidosis
- Overuse of laxatives or antacids that contain magnesium
A magnesium blood test can be done at any of our partner’s 4500+ labs located across the US. To know the magnesium test cost, refer to the first section of the article.
Frequently Asked Questions
Will insurance cover my testing cost?
No, insurance will not be covered in the billing. However, they will provide you with a receipt for insurance reimbursement purposes.
How should I book my appointment?
You can choose the most suitable provider from above and make an appointment by following the instructions mentioned by them.
Can I cancel my lab test order?
Yes, you can cancel your lab test order any time before your testing. A refund will be initiated after deducting the cancellation fee. However, cancellation is at the discretion of the provider.
Do the providers offer result interpretations?
Yes, a few providers may provide doctor consultation who will take you through the results and provide clarification if needed.
How do I receive my report?
To ensure your privacy, the test report will be mailed to you by the provider.
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