High-Sensitivity C-Reactive Protein: About This Test

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What is it?

A high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) test measures the amount of CRP (C-reactive protein) in your blood. This test can help find out your risk of a heart attack and stroke. Your doctor will consider this test result along with other risk factors such as cholesterol, age, blood pressure, and smoking.

Why is this test done?

This test may be done to find out if you have an increased chance of having a sudden heart problem, such as a heart attack. But the connection between high CRP levels and heart attack risk is not understood very well.

A high level of CRP may mean a higher-than-normal risk of heart attack and stroke. Your CRP level can help you and your doctor make decisions about lifestyle changes and medicines that can lower your risk.

How do you prepare for the test?

In general, there's nothing you have to do before this test, unless your doctor tells you to.

How is the test done?

A health professional uses a needle to take a blood sample, usually from the arm.

How long does the test take?

The test will take a few minutes.

What happens after the test?

  • You will probably be able to go home right away. It depends on the reason for the test.
  • You can go back to your usual activities right away.

Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to keep a list of the medicines you take. Ask your doctor when you can expect to have your test results.

Where can you learn more?

Go to https://www.healthwise.net/patientEd

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The Health Encyclopedia contains general health information. Not all treatments or services described are covered benefits for Kaiser Permanente members or offered as services by Kaiser Permanente. For a list of covered benefits, please refer to your Evidence of Coverage or Summary Plan Description. For recommended treatments, please consult with your health care provider.