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UW Health SMPH
American Family Children's Hospital

UW Hospital and Clinics Lab Test Directory

Test Name: Beta-hydroxybutyrate

Test Code(s): BOH / XBOH

CPT Code(s): 82010

Methodology: Enzymatic

Days Performed: Daily, 24 hours.

Turnaround Time: Stat: 1 hour.
Routine: 4 hours.

Specimen Requirements

Specimen: Blood

Collection Container: Preferred: Green cap with yellow ring (PST)
Also Acceptable: Green top, Red cap with yellow ring (SST), Red top

Collection Volume: Preferred: 1 mL
Pediatrics: 0.4 mL

Sample Analyzed: Plasma or serum

Volume Required: Preferred: 0.5 mL
Pediatrics: 0.2 mL

Specimen Processing: Centrifuge.  Redraw specimen if hemolysis is present.  If a complete barrier has not formed, transfer cell-free serum to plastic vial.  Refrigerate.

Specimen Transport: Transport specimen to UWHC Core Laboratory (B4/220). Transport with coolant pack if coming from outreach location.

Unacceptable Criteria: Hemolyzed specimens are not acceptable.

Stability: Ambient: 24 hours
Refrigerated: 4 days
Frozen: 1 year


Reference Interval:

0 days and up: 0.00-0.28 mmol/L


Additional Information:

BOH is one of three ketone bodies (BOH, acetone, and acetoacetate) that are commonly found in blood and urine. Increased blood concentrations of BOH, acetone and acetoacetate are observed in conditions associated with decreased availability of carbohydrates (e.g. starvation, anorexia nervosa, prolonged vomiting, and chronic alcohol consumption) or decreased use of carbohydrates (e.g. untreated diabetes mellitus). Decreased carbohydrate metabolism forces the body to acquire its energy production from fat, with the products of fat metabolism appearing in the blood and urine (ketoacidosis). BOH is the ketone body of choice when diagnosing or monitoring these conditions, because its blood levels rise quickly during early phases of these illnesses and respond as expected when successful treatment is initiated.

This test was performed using a modification of an FDA approved method. The performance characteristics of this test were determined by the UWHC Clinical Laboratories and meet the standards for clinical testing.

Ketones Acteoactetate Acetone Acetoacetic Acid

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