Sed Rate Test

Sed rate, or erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR), is a blood test that can expose inflammatory activity in your body. A sed rate test isn’t really a stand-alone diagnostic tool, however it might assist your doctor detect or keep an eye on the development of an inflammatory illness.

When your blood is placed in a tall, thin tube, red cell (erythrocytes) progressively settle to the bottom. Inflammation can trigger the cells to clump together. Since these clumps of cells are denser than specific cells, they settle to the bottom quicker.

The sed rate test determines the distance red cell fall in a test tube in one hour. The farther the red cell have descended, the greater the inflammatory reaction of your immune system.

What is sed rate test used for?

Sed rate tests were utilized more often in the past than they are today because more-specific measures of inflammatory activity are now offered. Today, the test is usually made use of if your doctor suspects you have:

A sed rate test can likewise assist figure out the intensity of your inflammatory reaction and keep track of the result of treatment.

Since a sed rate test can’t pinpoint the problem that’s triggering swelling in your body, it’s generally accompanied by other blood tests, such as the C-reactive protein (CRP) test.

The sed rate is an easy blood test. You don’t need to fast prior to the test.

A nurse or medical assistant will utilize a needle to draw blood from a vein, probably a vein in your arm. The website on your arm might be tender for a couple of hours, however you’ll have the ability to resume most normal activities.

Arise from your sed rate test will be reported in the range in millimeters (mm) red cell have come down in one hour (hr). The regular range is 0-22 mm/hr for men and 0-29 mm/hr for ladies. The upper threshold for a typical sed rate value might vary rather from one medical practice to another.

The results of your sed rate test are one piece of information to assist your doctor check your health. Talk with your doctor about what your sed rate outcomes imply due to the symptoms you’re experiencing and the outcomes of other diagnostic tests.

Precision of test results

A number of conditions can influence the buildings of blood, therefore influencing how rapidly red blood cells sink in a sample of blood. So info about inflammatory illness – what your doctor plans to gain from the sed rate test– may be obscured by the influence of other conditions. These making complex elements consist of:

  • Anemia
  • Pregnancy
  • High cholesterol
  • Kidney issues

Your doctor will consider possible complicating aspects when interpreting the outcomes of your sed rate test.

Results of Sed Rate Test

Regular Range

The following table reveals the normal variety of values within which the results of the sed rate test must lie for an average healthy individual of 4 different sets: men, females, children and newborn children.

Sed Rate Test Normal Range


0 to 14 millimeters per hour


0 to 20 millimeters per hour


0 to 10 millimeters per hour

Newborn Children

0 to 2 millimeters per hour

High Value

In specific patients, the results of the sed rate test might obtain a higher value that lies outside of the regular variety for their particular group of individuals. Sedimentation rates may be greater since of the following aspects:

  • Autoimmune diseases, for example, rheumatoid arthritis and systemic lupus erythematosus
  • Persistent kidney illness
  • Cancer, for instance, multiple myeloma and lymphoma
  • Viral infections
  • Various infections, for instance, appendicitis, pneumonia and pelvic inflammatory disease
  • Infections of the kidney, joints, skin, bones or heart valve
  • Thyroid gland swelling, which is called Graves’ illness
  • Swelling of blood vessels, for instance, giant cell arthritis
  • Inflammation of joints, for example, polymyalgia rheumatica
  • Pregnancy
  • Toxemia of pregnancy, which is called preeclampsia

Low Value

Carrying out the sed rate test on particular patients might yield low values, which lie below the regular range of values for their respective group. Low values of sedimentation rates can be triggered due to a number of factors, such as:

  • High levels of blood sugar level
  • Liver disease
  • Polycythemia
  • Sickle cell disease

Influencing Factors

In particular conditions, physicians either do not carry out the sed rate test or carrying out the test yields incorrect outcomes. This may be so in the following cases:

  • A patient struggling with anemia
  • A patient presently undergoing her menstrual period
  • A pregnant patient
  • The sed rate is greater in older individuals.
  • Specific type of medication might likewise affect the result of the test.


  • A sed rate test is not completely trustworthy. Although it is utilized to figure out whether there is any inflammation in the body and thus, diagnose various diseases, there are certain diseases that have very little or no effect on the sed rate. In this case, although the patient will have the disease, the outcomes of the sed rate test will lie within a normal range.
  • Doctors must not exclusively depend on the sed rate test to determine whether the patient is suffering from an illness. This is since the test can not point the specific causal factor.
  • Medical professionals typically utilize the sed rate test in combination with numerous other kinds of tests. For instance, they may use the C-reactive protein (CRP) blood test to check for any swelling in the body.


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