Element 22 test (Nutrients & Toxicity)

elements 22 test

Last Updated July 24th, 2021

What is heavy metal toxicity?

Heavy metals are the elements which are having a high atomic weight and are five times denser than water. These are essential for various physiological functions. If the concentration of the heavy metals become more than the clinical range, it can cause Heavy Metal toxicity which has adverse effects on the health of an individual.

What is the Element 22 test?

The element 22 test is used for measuring and monitoring the levels of heavy metals and some nutrients in blood as well as urine. In some of the cases, your doctor might ask for a sample of the liver tissue or the kidney tissues as well for conducting the test. In very rare cases, the hair and the fingernails can also be used for further diagnosis.

What heavy metals are tested in the Elements 22 test?

The heavy metals which are tested are as follows:

– Aluminium 
Arsenic 
– Barium 
– Cadmium 
– Caesium 
– Mercury 
Lead 
– Tin 
– Bismuth 
– Beryllium 
– Antimony 
– Strontium 
– Thallium 
– Uranium 

Which nutrients are tested in the Elements 22 profile?

The nutrients which are tested are as follows:

– Cobalt
– Chromium
– Molybdenum
– Silver
– Vanadium
– Selenium
– Nickel
– Manganese

Why did my doctor ask me to undergo the Element 22 test?

Your  doctor might suggest you undergo the Element 22 test if you had been going through the following conditions:

If you had been working with heavy metals especially if you have been working in a construction site, mines, radiator repair shops, and firing ranges, you have been exposed to various heavy metals. Exposure to various heavy metals acutely or chronically has various health hazards. In this case, your doctor will recommend you to undergo the Element 22 test.

If you are already suffering from some disease and your doctor suspects that it’s because of the overexposure to the heavy metals and other toxic elements, he might suggest you undergo the Element 22 test.

If you are already undergoing the chelation therapy which is used for treating the high levels of heavy metal toxicity in the body, your doctor might suggest you undergo the Element 22 test for evaluating the response rate of your body to the treatment.

When should I  take the Element 22 test?

Heavy metal toxicity leads to various adverse health issues. There are several common symptoms which are associated with heavy metal toxicity. If you are experiencing any of those symptoms, it is highly recommended for you to undergo the Element 22 test. Some of the most common symptoms include:
 
– Pain in the abdominal area.
– Frequent vomiting along with nausea
– Chronic diarrhea
– Various symptoms of the nervous system complications like numbness or tingling of hands and feet.
– Persisting headache and tiredness
– The weakness of bones and muscles
Anemia (insufficient red blood cell count)
– Kidney damage or renal(kidney) failure
– Liver damage
– Edema is the condition where fluid gets accumulated in the lungs
– Loss of memory and trouble in concentrating
– Mees lines(refers to horizontal lines on the nails) 
– A sudden shift of mood or mood swings
– Weakened bones or hollow bones(osteoporosis) in the case of kids
Premature labor or miscarriage in the case of pregnant women
– Irregular beating of  the heart
– Recurrent or persisting fever with chills

What are the preparations required for the Element 22 test?

– There is no need for fasting. But make sure that you abstain from any seafood for 48 hours prior to the test.

– If you have undergone any medical procedure which included gadolinium or iodine-containing contrast media, you have to wait for 96 hours before the sample for the test is collected.

– No old medications ae needed to be stopped. Consult your doctor since he can guide you better if you need to stop any medications which can affect the results of the Element 22 test.

– No new medications are even included.

What is the procedure of the blood collection for the element 22 test?

The Element 22 test is conducted by the collection of a sample of blood. The blood sample is collected by the procedure of venipuncture. The venipuncture procedure is carried out by the steps elaborated below:

– A tourniquet or a tight elastic band is wrapped around the upper arm of an individual. This makes the veins prominent and thus helps in locating the veins very easily from where the blood has to be collected.

– A needle or a syringe is used for the collection of the blood sample.

– The needle is injected into the vein from which the blood sample will get collected.

– The blood sample is drawn and collected into the tube of the syringe.

– The tourniquet is removed after the blood collection is done.

– The spot of the puncture is cleaned after that with an antiseptic. This helps in preventing any kind of further infection.

– A cotton swab is dabbed on the site of the puncture. A bandage is put on the spot to stop any further bleeding.

The collected blood sample is then sent to the lab for the Element 22 test.

What is the procedure of the urine collection for the Element 22 test?

The sample of urine is collected for the Element 22 test over a period of 24 hours. The lab technicians or your healthcare provider will give you the container for storing the sample of the urine. The guidelines for the storage will be provided by your healthcare provider or by the diagnostic center itself. The procedure for the collection of the urine sample is elaborated in the following steps:

– Flush out all the urine and or your urinary bladder via excretion right in the morning. Keep a check on the time and note down the time.

– After that, you have to collect all the urine in the given containers. All the urine that you will pass in the next 24 hours should be collected in the provided containers.

– As per guidelines, the urine sample has to be stored in a cool place with ice or inside a refrigerator.

Then the urine sample is sent for the Element 22 test to the laboratories.

What is the procedure of the liver tissue biopsy for the Element 22 test?

The liver tissue sample is collected via the liver tissue biopsy procedure. The liver tissue biopsy procedure is carried out in by the process elaborated in the steps below:

– After wearing the hospital gown, you have to lie down on your back in a particular posture by stretching your right elbow outside and the right-hand palm under your head.

– An Ultrasound technology is used to locate the exact position of the liver from where the tissue has to be collected for the test.

– Just prior to the procedure, you will be given a very mild sedative.

– A local or general anaesthetic is used for numbing the area of the abdomen. This helps in the prevention of the pain by numbing the whole area from where the tissue sample has to be collected.

– Then the doctor makes a very small incision and inserts the needle from the upper abdomen area which is used for the collection of the hepatic(liver) tissue.

– The liver tissue sample id collected by the ultrasound-guided needle.

The procedure takes around 5 minutes. After the Liver tissue sample is collected, it is sent for the Element 22 test.

What is the procedure of the kidney tissue biopsy for the Element 22 test?

The sample of the tissues of the kidney is collected by the procedure of the kidney tissue biopsy. The procedure of the kidney tissue biopsy is done by the following steps:

– Generally, people have to lie down on their abdomen on an examination table. The technician will put a pillow under the abdomen of the person to support the abdomen comfortably and to lift up the kidneys towards the back of the person. The kidney gets pushed up nearer to the skin surface by this method. 

– The individuals who had undergone a kidney transplant are always suggested to lie down on their backs since the doctors place the kidney in the front lower part of the abdomen.

– A sedative will be administered.

– The technician will mark the area from where the needle will enter.

– The area is marked with the assistance of the Ultrasound instruments called transducer. Sometimes the needle inserted inside the kidney is also guided by CT Scan(Computer Tomography Scan) and MRI(Magnetic Resonance Imaging).

You will be instructed to hold your breath when the needle is inserted for the collection of the sample of the tissues. The needle might be inserted 5 to 6 times for the proper collection of the sample of the tissue. Each time you have to hold your breath for 30 seconds. Holding your breath helps in preventing any injury or bruises. The sample of the kidney tissues is collected and finally sent for the element 22 test.

Is the procedure of the Element 22 test painful?

The procedure of the Element 22 test is not at all painful. The collection of the procedure of the samples which involve the injection of the needles and syringes might involve a mild to moderate pain or a pinpricking sensation. This feeling wears off within a very short span of time, i.e. in a couple of hours.

What are the risks associated with the blood collection procedure for the Element 22 test?

There are few minute risks associated with the blood collection procedure for the Element 22 test:

– Haematoma is the condition in which blood clots under the skin and forms lumps. This is a risk posed by the venipuncture procedure used for the collection of the blood sample.

– There can be bruising or bleeding during the collection of the blood sample.

– The feeling of the lightheadedness and the dizziness is very common after the blood sample is drawn.

Certain individuals experience pain due to multiple punctures while finding the right vein for the collection of the blood sample.

What are the risks associated with the liver tissue biopsy?

– There is a chance of bruising of the area or the site of the biopsy.
– Heavy bleeding either inside or outside your body.
– The occurrence of various infections near the biopsy site.
– The other organs around the liver might get wounded or bruised.
– There can be accidental injuries to other organs around the biopsy site.
– A lot of fluid collection inside your abdomen(severe ascites).
– A biliary tract infection. There are chances of infections developing in the parts of your abdomen around your liver or the cite of the tissue biopsy.

What are the risks associated with kidney tissue biopsy?

The most common complication in the case of the kidney tissue biopsy is heavy bleeding. There ca be punctures on the site or around the site of the biopsy. There can be various infections during a kidney biopsy. In cases of infections, antibiotics are recommended.

What is the price of the Element 22 test in India?

The price range of the Element 22 test in India starts from Rs 1800-1900. The prices vary according to the location of the diagnostic center i.e. the city or the state the diagnostic center is located in.

 When will I get my results for the Element 22 test?

You will get your results for the Element 22 test within 24 hours – 36 hours of the test conducted.

How to understand my Element 22 test result?

The clinical ranges of the levels of the heavy metals in the blood and the urine are elaborated in the chart below:

Metal name Blood reference rangeUrine Reference range
Aluminum less than 10 µg/L 5.6 to 15.6 μg/g
Arsenic  Less than 50 mcg/L ≤ 50 mcg/L
Barium  1.0–7.0 mg/L 1.5 µg/L(approx.)
Cadmium  0.03–0.12 μg/dl 0.185 µg/L
Caesium  1-300ng/g-NA-
Mercury  10-20μg/L 10 mcg of mercury/24-hour
Lead  0-60 Fg/dL 0-60 Fg/dL
Tin  10-20μg/L Lesser than 100 μg/L
Bismuth  4 to 30 ng/mL 60 – 600 ng/l
Beryllium  <1.0 ng/m 0.28–1 μg/L
Antimony  Lesser than 10 µg/L  0.120–0.364 micrograms/gram
Strontium  1.2 μg/L 0.3 μg/L
Thallium less than 10 μg/mL  less than 10 μg every 24 hours
Uranium 5 ng/L 0.005–0.010 µg/L

What are the clinical ranges for nutrients tested under Elements 22?

The clinical ranges of the levels of the heavy metals in the blood and the urine are elaborated in the chart given below:

Nutrients Blood reference range Urine Reference range
Cobalt 0.5 and 2.5 μg/g Less than  1.0 µg/L
Chromium  2.0 – 3.0 µg/100 mL 0.2 to 2 Ug/litre
Molybdenum <4 ng/mLImmediately flushed through urine
Silver  < 0.27Ug/I00ml < 1.91 Ug/L
Vanadium 1 nmol/L 0-1 µg. / ml
Selenium  150-241 ng/mL 12.0-52.6 µg/d
Nickel  0.14-0.65 µg/litre 0.0-14.9 µg/d
Manganese 4–15 μg/L 1–8 μg/L

 

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