Comprehensive Metabolic Panel (CMP)

What is a Comprehensive Metabolic Panel (CMP)?

A Comprehensive Metabolic Panel (CMP) is a group of blood tests that provide information about how the organs and other parts of the body are functioning. It is usually comprised of 14 tests used to measure blood sugar levels, electrolyte and fluid balance, kidney function, and liver function. A CMP is typically used to screen for possible medical problems, help with a diagnosis, and monitor various treatments.


No special preparation is required for a CMP. You should, however, inform your physician of any medications you are taking, including herbal supplements as they may affect the results.


The procedure for a Comprehensive Metabolic Panel is very simple. A health care professional will take a blood sample, typically from a vein in the arm, and then send it to a lab for testing. The results are usually available within a few days.


The Comprehensive Metabolic Panel includes 14 tests that measure the following substances in the blood:

  • Glucose (blood sugar)
  • Blood urea nitrogen (BUN)
  • Creatinine
  • Calcium
  • Electrolytes (sodium, potassium, chloride and carbon dioxide)
  • Proteins (total protein, albumin and globulin)
  • Alkaline phosphatase
  • Aspartate Transaminase (AST, or SGOT)
  • Alanine Transaminase (ALT, or SGPT)
  • Bilirubin (total, direct and indirect)
  • Gamma-glutamyl transferase (GGT)

Why have a Comprehensive Metabolic Panel?

A Comprehensive Metabolic Panel is used for a variety of purposes. It can be used to screen for medical problems such as diabetes, kidney or liver disease, and electrolyte imbalances. It is also used to monitor existing conditions, and to check the effectiveness of treatment. CMPs can also help to evaluate the effects of certain medications, as well as to monitor the health of pregnant women.

When to have a Comprehensive Metabolic Panel?

Most often a CMP is performed as part of a routine physical examination, or when a person is being evaluated for certain medical problems. It may be performed frequently to monitor an existing condition or treatment. It is also routinely used to monitor pregnant women and newborns, as well as to screen newborns for certain conditions.


There are few risks associated with a Comprehensive Metabolic Panel. The most common risk is a slight bruise or soreness at the site of the blood draw. This risk can be minimized by applying pressure to the site after the draw.