Does this test have other names?
What is this test?
This test measures the amount of gastrin in your blood. Gastrin is a hormone made
by G cells in the lower part of your stomach. It controls the release of gastric acid
to help break down food.
Why do I need this test?
You may need this test if your healthcare provider wants to check for high levels
of gastrin. This test also helps to diagnose and keep track of different conditions.
Gastrinomas. Tumors that produce gastrin.
Zollinger-Ellison (ZE) syndrome. A rare condition with tumors in the small intestine or pancreas.
G-cell hyperplasia. Cells in the stomach make too much gastrin.
What other tests might I have along with this test?
You may also have lab tests like a gastric acid level, a pH test to measure the acid
in your stomach juices, or other tests that check gastrin production. You may also
have imaging tests or an endoscopy. For the endoscopy, the healthcare provider uses
a small camera to look in your stomach.
What do my test results mean?
Test results may vary depending on your age, gender, health history, and other things.
Your test results may be different depending on the lab used. They may not mean you
have a problem. Ask your healthcare provider what your test results mean for you.
The results are usually expressed in picograms per milliliter of blood (pg/mL). The
normal range is:
Your levels may be higher if you are an older adult.
People with ZE syndrome or G-cell hyperplasia usually have levels of gastrin in their
blood that are quite high. But you could have ZE syndrome without high levels of blood
gastrin. Other conditions and some medicines can also raise gastrin levels.
How is this test done?
The test is done with a blood sample. A needle is used to draw blood from a vein in
your arm or hand.
Does this test pose any risks?
Having a blood test with a needle carries some risks. These include bleeding, infection,
bruising, and feeling lightheaded. When the needle pricks your arm or hand, you may
feel a slight sting or pain. Afterward, the site may be sore.
What might affect my test results?
Things that may affect your test results include:
Having peptic ulcer surgery
Eating a lot of high-protein foods
Taking insulin to treat diabetes
Taking antacids or other medicines that block gastric acid production
Taking calcium supplements
Having drinks, food, or medicine with caffeine
Taking antidepressants, which can lower your gastrin levels
How do I get ready for this test?
You must not eat or drink for 12 hours before the test. You can drink water. Ask your
healthcare provider if there are any medicines that you should stop taking before
the test. Don't drink alcohol for at least 24 hours before having this test. Tell
your healthcare provider about all medicines, herbs, vitamins, and supplements you
are taking. This includes medicines that don't need a prescription and any illegal
drugs you may use.