Phosphate in Blood

What is Phosphate in Blood?

Phosphate in blood, also known as serum phosphate or inorganic phosphate, is a mineral that helps regulate salt and acid levels in the body. It also provides energy, helps build muscles, and helps keep bones strong and healthy. Phosphate plays a role in many biochemical processes.

Preparation for Phosphate Blood Test

Most chemistries, including phosphate tests, are performed on a blood sample. For this test, a blood sample is usually taken from a vein in your arm or hand, though sometimes a finger prick may be used instead.

Types of Phosphate Tests

Serum inorganic phosphate—This test measures levels in the blood and can help diagnose disorders such as hypoparathyroidism, chronic kidney disease, and certain types of cancer.

urine phosphate—This test measures phosphate levels in the urine and can help diagnose conditions that lead to excessive phosphate excretion, such as Fanconi Syndrome and kidney disease.

Risks of a Phosphate Blood Test

In general, a phosphate blood test is a safe procedure with minimal risk. The most common risks associated with any blood test are:

  • Bruising
  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Fainting or feeling lightheaded

Why the Phosphate Blood Test is Performed

The phosphate blood test is usually done to help diagnose and monitor conditions that involve the metabolism of phosphorus. It can also be used to track the effectiveness of treatments or detect diseases that affect the kidneys, parathyroids, or bones.

It's especially important to measure inorganic phosphate levels in people with disorders that affect the metabolism of minerals, such as calcium and phosphate. Too much or too little of these minerals can lead to serious health problems.

When to Be Tested for Phosphate Levels in Blood

Your doctor may recommend a phosphate blood test if you have symptoms such as:

  • Weakness
  • Muscle aches
  • Abnormal heart rhythms
  • Confusion

Your doctor may also recommend a phosphate blood test if you’re being treated for conditions that affect mineral levels, such as kidney disease and hyperparathyroidism. In some cases, your doctor may recommend periodic phosphate tests to monitor your mineral levels and ensure any treatment you’re receiving is effective.