Adenosine Deaminase Test
The adenosine deaminase test is a popular biochemical test used to evaluate the levels of Adenosine Deaminase (ADA) enzyme in bodily fluids such as sputum, cerebrospinal fluids, pleural fluids, synovial fluids, ascites, and blood serum.
ADA is a vital enzyme found in the body that accomplishes the following tasks:
The ADA test measures the levels of ADA enzymes in pleural fluids or serum, which are produced in greater quantities as an immunological response during TB and aid in the early detection of the illness.
What are the uses of the Adenosine Deaminase test?
The ADA test is most commonly used to detect tuberculosis. The condition is caused by the Mycobacterium Tuberculosis bacteria, which infects the lungs and causes a buildup of excess pleural fluids or pleural inflammation. The ADA enzyme is responsible for inducing a T-lymphocytic response to the pathogenic invasion, resulting in an increase in ADA production inside the pleural cavity.
What is the need for an Adenosine Deaminase Test?
Adenosine Deaminase testing is commonly used to diagnose tuberculosis (TB), but it may also be used to detect infections in cerebral and peritoneal fluids.
The exam is also used to screen certain groups of people, including:
- Health professionals that work with TB patients
- Individuals leaving tuberculosis-infested areas
- Women who are pregnant
- Children with a positive TB screening test immunocompromised patients.
What happens during Adenosine Deaminase Test?
The ADA test includes collecting pleural fluid from the chest pleural cavity. The aspirate is drained through a tube after a needle is inserted between the pleural membranes protecting the chest and lungs. This fluid is subsequently sent to the laboratory for immunoassay.
How to prepare for the ADA test?
There is no required preparation for an ADA exam. If you take any medications, you must notify your doctor since some compounds, such as blood thinners, may interfere with the test.
If you are having the test, it is best to have someone accompany you home because the anesthesia used during the test may cause dizziness.
Understanding the Adenosine Deaminase Test results
ADA activity greater than 43U/ml in pleural fluids indicates pleural tuberculosis with 81- 100% sensitivity and greater than 83% specificity.
Higher ADA values also may be caused by health conditions, such as pulmonary embolism, lupus,lymphomas, sarcoidosis, and other parapneumonic and vascular diseases. However, the ADA values in these cases are slightly higher.