C-Reactive Protein (CRP, hs-CRP)

 

  • C-reactive protein (CRP) is a glycoprotein produced by the liver, which is normally absent from the blood. The presence of acute inflammation with tissue destruction within the body stimulates its production. Therefore, a positive CRP indicates the presence of an inflammatory process. When the acute inflammation is no longer present, the CRP rapidly dissipates from the body. The CRP typically rises within 6 hours of the start of inflammation, allowing the inflammation to be confirmed much sooner than through the use of the erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR), which usually increases about a week after inflammation begins.
CRP in Inflamatory process

CRP in Inflamatory process

 

  • There are two types of CRP which can be measured. The standard CRP is used to assess how active inflammation is in such chronic problems as inflammatory bowel disease, arthritis, and autoimmune diseases; to assess for a new infection such as in appendicitis and postoperative conditions; and to monitor response to treatment of
    these conditions.
  • The other type of CRP is high-sensitivity CRP (hs-CRP). This substance is considered a marker of low-grade vascular inflammation, which is a key factor in the development and rupture of atheromatous plaque. Elevated CRP levels predict future coronary events, stroke, peripheral vascular disease, and type 2 diabetes mellitus. Thus this test is used to assess risk of cardiovascular problems in conjunction with other testing, such as measuring cholesterol levels.
hs-CRP and Cardiovascular Disease Risk

hs-CRP and Cardiovascular Disease Risk

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