Inflammation is what happens when your body responds to threats like microbial invaders, poisonous chemicals, and physical injuries. Signs of acute (short-term) inflammation include redness and swelling at the affected part of your body.
The inflammatory response (inflammation) occurs when tissues are injured by bacteria, trauma, toxins, heat, or any other cause. The damaged cells release chemicals including histamine, bradykinin, and prostaglandins. These chemicals cause blood vessels to leak fluid into the tissues, causing swelling. This helps isolate the foreign substance from further contact with body tissues.
The chemicals also attract white blood cells called phagocytes that “eat” germs and dead or damaged cells. This process is called phagocytosis. Phagocytes eventually die. Pus is formed from a collection of dead tissue, dead bacteria, and live and dead phagocytes.
Inflammation can be short-term (a few days) but when it persists for months or years, it’s called chronic inflammation.
Chronic inflammation is completely different from acute inflammation. While acute inflammation is a protective response by your body, chronic inflammation can be incredibly destructive. It occurs when your body’s immune system fails to eradicate a threat – such as a bacterial infection – or when you have too many pro-inflammatory substances entering your body and not enough anti-inflammatory substances, like vitamin D, to control the inflammation.
Chronic inflammation is connected with more extreme health conditions, such as (to name a few):
Chronic inflammation can be the result of autoimmune disorders: your immune system malfunctions and goes to war against healthy tissue – unaware that your healthy tissue is not a threat.
You can definitively identify inflammation by testing for a marker called C-Reactive Protein.
Whenever inflammation occurs somewhere in your body – whether acute or chronic – the affected tissue sends a signal to your liver (via small molecules) to release C-Reactive Protein (CRP) into your bloodstream. CRP is thought to prime the immune system to help with a rapid response against pathogens.
Levels of CRP increase very rapidly in response to trauma, inflammation, and infection and decrease just as rapidly when the condition is resolved. So, CRP levels is widely used to monitor inflammation.
A high level of CRP in the blood is a marker of inflammation. It can be caused by a wide variety of conditions, from infection to cancer. High CRP levels can also indicate that there’s inflammation in the arteries of the heart, which can mean a higher risk of heart attack. However, CRP tests are nonspecific, and CRP levels can be elevated in any inflammatory condition.
It’s important to measure your CRP levels as it detects chronic inflammation and chronic inflammation is a warning sign that something’s wrong in your body. Chronic inflammation is connected with more extreme health conditions, such as arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, atherosclerosis, and cancer to name a few.
Another reason why you should get tested is because chronic inflammation can happen slowly and/or be dismissed as something minor. Months and years can go by without the true underlying cause being identified. All the while, the inflammation can be damaging your health.
Order an Inflammation (CRP) Home Test Kit. Get the convenience of home testing with the reassurance of professional clinical analysis. Your results are delivered quickly and securely online.
Our Inflammation home blood test kit assesses low levels of inflammation in your body using hs-CRP, a highly sensitive clinical marker. This allows you to indicate your risk from cardiovascular diseases including stroke, heart attack and death in apparently healthy individuals. It can also be used to monitor sporting performance, since levels of inflammation can be elevated following over-training.
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