What is a Prothrombin Time PT INR Test?
Clotting is an important function that your body performs when you get an injury. When you experience clotting that happens too fast or too slowly, then you are at higher risk of condition escalation, such as with excess bleeding.
You can bleed out further or develop dangerous clots in your arties and veins if your clotting function is impaired due to any reason. That's why a PT INR test is performed, to determine whether your clotting function is impacted by secondary factors.
A prothrombin time test or a PT test is also important if you are on medication for clotting as well. A prothrombin time PT test is measured using the international normalized ratio INR factor to determine the prothrombin time parameter via the blood sample.
The PT INR test also measures the effectiveness of the clotting factors in the body, and provides a comparable reading that can be checked across labs in different time frames. This gives you a more consistent reading of your clotting function over time.
What is Prothrombin?
The reason why Prothrombin is measured in the PT INR test, is because it is a chief substance that is a coagulation factor. It is made in the liver, and is a part of your clotting factor that goes towards a site of injury for clotting.
The speed with which your blood clots develop is determined by the amount of clotting factors present in the blood. That's why slow clotting is risky as you can bleed out further, and fast clotting can be dangerous as they can form in your arteries and veins.
Prothrombin is a key component of the overall clotting process, and is an ideal indicator of the process of clotting as well as its effectiveness. The PT test can also be used to identify potential blood disorders because of which clotting is being impacted.
A high PT level can indicate that it takes more than normal time for your body to form clots. You need to get tested immediately for the potential reasons why you are experiencing excess bleeding and longer duration to heal from wounds.
What is the normal range for the PT INR test?
The normal range for the PT INR test will depend on several factors such as medical history, medication, age, etc. If you are not on blood thinners, then the normal range for PT INR test is 11 to 13.5 seconds. An INR range of 0.8 to 1.1 is also considered the normal range for the PT INR test.
If you are taking blood thinners and other medication, the normal range will be affected as well. That's why it is important to inform your doctor about your complete medical history prior to testing.
When do you need a PT INR test?
There are several reasons why you need a PT INR test to be performed, allowing you to gain more insight into your blood clotting capabilities. If there are anomalies detected within the test results, then your doctor can take the necessary action.
Understanding core reason for abnormal clotting
Abnormal clotting is a key risk factor as you can have clots in your arties and veins if your clotting time is too short. To understand the phenomenon of abnormal clotting, a PT INR test is performed.
Analysing unusual bleeding phenomenon
Unusual bleeding and lack of timely healing can be a major issue if you get minor cuts as well as major injuries. A delay in the process of clotting can be life threatening as well, if you have a chronic illness that you are managing.
Testing for medication effectiveness
If you are already on blood thinners then you should check your blood clotting function using the PT INR test. This can help you understand whether you are at risk of developing dangerous blood clots or excess bleeding while on medication.
You may have a vitamin K deficiency that is impacting your overall blood health. You can get further testing done if you are already experiencing abnormal clotting for healing. Getting tested in a timely manner is the best approach.
Analysing issues with liver function
If you have issues with liver function, then your clotting will be impacted. You can get your liver function test done, as well as get a PT INR test performed to check for risk of bleeding. Your liver function can be tested from multiple points.
A part of a general checkup
As you age, it is important to have the right information regarding longevity and quality of life. If for whatever reason you are injured, then the likelihood that you'll recover on time, can be tracked using the PT INR test for clotting.
Understanding symptoms of a blood disorder
It is important to understand both major types of issues that can occur when you have excess bleeding and excess clotting. With both posing a major threat to your wellbeing, it is important to recognize the symptoms earlier.
Your risk factor also rises when you are older, which is why it is even more so important to get your PT INR time checked, so that you are completely informed of your risks.
Significant bleeding levels
If you are experiencing heavy bleeding when you get cuts on your fingers or leg, then you may have a problem with your clotting factors. You should get tested immediately to determine the root cause of your bleeding.
Quick to bruise
When you start getting bruises that are deep, on minor bumps, then your risk factor rises of excess bleeding. You can get your PT INR test done to determine whether you have a problem with poor clotting.
Blood in urine
When you get blood in your urine, you should get a test done for PT INR as well. Your liver function may be impaired which can also be impacting your clotting capability.
Heavier menstrual bleeding
If you find that your menstrual bleeding is heavier than normal, and you are experiencing the other symptoms mentioned above, then you should get tested. You may have a problem with excess bleeding.
There are critical symptoms of a clotting disorder or issue as well, which you should be careful of. Some of these are as follows.
Pain in the legs/tenderness
If you have deep vein thrombosis or painful clotting in your legs, then there could be an issue with prothrombin. You should check your risk factor for developing dangerous clots, especially those that are painful to touch.
Complications with breathing
Clots in the lungs can increase your risk of pulmonary embolism, which is why coughing fits and difficulty breathing should be tested immediately.
Heart palpitations/rapid heart beat
If you have a problem with frequent heart palpitations, then getting a test done is the right way ahead. You can understand your risk factors from a medical standpoint.