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What is a Realistic Upper Limit for Red Blood Cell Folate?

Discussion in 'Diagnostic Guidelines and Laboratory Testing' started by Little Bluestem, Dec 27, 2012.

  1. Little Bluestem

    Little Bluestem Senescent on the Illinois prairie, USA

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    I recently had some testing done. The limits given for RBC folate is >280 ng/mL RBC. This makes my 592 within acceptable range. Is it really?
  2. AFCFS

    AFCFS Senior Member

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    You think that would be a simple question.:eek:

    Medscape Reference Folate (Folic Acid), gives this Reference Range: Adults: 140-628 ng/mL, or 317-1422 nmol/L.

    Apparently there is some debate about the analysis, as noted in A Practical Approach to Red Blood Cell Folate Analysis. Although no range is give, in the two methods of compared analysis, they show:
    Then there is this 24 page document from the CDC:
    Laboratory Procedure Manual
    Analyte: Folate
    Matrix: Serum/Whole Blood
    Method: Microbiological Assay
    Method No: 4000.03

    On page 17 and 18, after much ado (which is likely required to make sense of what is quoted), they state the following:
    Lab Tests Online gives a pretty good overview of their Vitamin B12 and Folate test, but they state:
    Noting that the their Sample Report does not show ranges that seem congruent with your test values.

    So, may want to ask you doc which method they used in the test and to explain the results to you. It may require the doc to call the lab, as this seems to get kind of complicated.
  3. Little Bluestem

    Little Bluestem Senescent on the Illinois prairie, USA

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    Wow, the Lab Tests Online reference ranges are very different than mine. Mine falls within the other two.

    This is why I dislike that mean ± SD methodology. If the reference range truly reflected optimum health, it wouldn't change when food was fortified. Assuming the average person is in optimum health is ridiculous.

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