Microalbumin Creatinine Ratio

What is the Microalbumin Creatinine Ratio (MCR)?

The Microalbumin Creatinine Ratio (MCR) is a measure of the amount of microscopic proteins (microalbumin) present in the urine relative to the amount of creatinine (a natural breakdown product of muscle tissue). It is an indication of kidney health, as excess levels of albumin (a type of protein released by the kidneys to help control blood pressure) may be an indication of kidney damage.

Preparation for MCR Test

No special preparation is required for the MCR test. You may be asked to collect urine samples in two separate containers during two different time periods.

Procedure for MCR Test

A laboratory technician will use laboratory equipment to measure the levels of microalbumin and creatinine in a urine sample. Typically, the results for the MCR are reported as a ratio, with the higher numbers indicating higher levels of albumin.

Types of MCR Tests

There are two main types of MCR tests:

  • Visual Albumin-Creatinine Ratio (VACR): A urine sample is first placed in a test tube and then the technician notes any visible signs of excess albumin in the sample.
  • Quantitative Albumin-Creatinine Ratio (QACR): A laboratory technician runs the urine sample through a sophisticated test that measures the exact levels of albumin and creatinine in the sample.

Risks of MCR Test

The MCR test has no known risks. There are no special risks associated with collecting the sample or with the analysing of the sample. The risk of any medical test lies in the potential use of the results and any subsequent actions taken on the basis of the results.

Why is MCR Test Done?

The MCR test is often done as part of a regular medical examination or screening for conditions, such as diabetes, hypertension (high blood pressure), or kidney disease. It is used to detect early signs of kidney damage and to monitor kidney function in patients with certain medical conditions or risk factors.

When is MCR Test Done?

The MCR test is typically done once a year when age, lifestyle and other factors are taken into consideration. It is also recommended for patients with certain medical conditions, such as diabetes or hypertension tests done regularly to monitor kidney function.