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Comprehensive Metabolic Panel (CMP)

A comprehensive metabolic panel (CMP) is a group of blood tests that give an overall picture of your body’s metabolism and chemical balance. Your healthcare provider may order or perform a CMP as part of a routine checkup or to rule out or monitor kidney and liver problems.

CMPs are performed in a wide range of medical settings, including labs, urgent care centers, and walk-in clinics. If you need help finding a healthcare provider that can do a CMP test, use Solv to locate only the highest-rated testing providers in your area and book an appointment right away.

Who should get a CMP?

You may get a CMP during a regular checkup or yearly physical at your doctor’s office. The National Library of Medicine (NLM) outlines that you may also need a CMP if your doctor suspects you have any type of kidney or liver disease. Because both of these organs play an important role in your metabolism, the CMP tests that look at your metabolism are a great indicator of how your liver and kidneys are functioning.

According to the University of Rochester Medical Center, a CMP may even be used to check on metabolic conditions like diabetes. CMP tests can also check your kidney and liver health if you take medications that can affect these organs (like medications for high blood pressure).

If you think you may need a CMP, the best place to start is a conversation with your doctor. Your doctor can perform a physical exam, review your medical history, and talk with you in greater detail about your symptoms to determine if this test is beneficial for you.

How to get a CMP

Most often, your doctor can order a CMP test and refer you to a lab that will draw your blood for the test. Some walk-in labs, clinics, and urgent care centers may also offer a CMP on-site, though the results will take a short time to come back.

Solv makes it easy to find where you can get a CMP. Search our directory of healthcare providers and services to help you find where to get tested near you.

What is a CMP used for?

A CMP can be used to check a variety of bodily functions and processes. According to the NLM, some of the results you can get from a CMP include:

  • Metabolism analysis
  • Liver and kidney health
  • Sodium, potassium, and chloride levels (electrolytes)
  • Blood sugar levels
  • Calcium levels
  • Blood protein levels
  • Acid and base balance

Your doctor may also use a CMP to monitor the side effects of certain medications, especially those that may affect the functioning of your liver and kidneys. This test may be used to help your doctor diagnose certain medical conditions or to screen for certain conditions for which you may not yet have symptoms.

Which substances are measured in a CMP?

A CMP measures the levels of 14 different substances in your blood. According to the University of Rochester Medical Center, these substances include:

  • Albumin: A protein made in the liver. It is responsible for transporting important substances through the bloodstream and prevents fluid from leaking out of blood vessels.
  • Alkaline phosphatase: An enzyme made by the liver.
  • Alanine aminotransferase: An enzyme made by the liver.
  • Aspartate aminotransferase: An enzyme made by the liver.
  • Blood urea nitrogen (BUN): A waste product that is removed from the blood by your kidneys.
  • Calcium: Essential for the proper functioning of your nerves, muscles, and heart.
  • Carbon dioxide: An electrolyte.
  • Chloride: An electrolyte. It works with sodium, potassium, and carbon dioxide to control many bodily processes.
  • Creatinine: A byproduct of muscle activity that is removed from the blood by your kidneys.
  • Glucose: A type of sugar that supplies your body with energy. Glucose levels out of the normal range could indicate type 1 or type 2 diabetes.
  • Potassium: An electrolyte. It comes from the food you eat and is present in all of your body tissues.
  • Sodium: An electrolyte. Most of the sodium in your blood comes from the food you eat. This electrolyte is regulated by your kidneys.
  • Total bilirubin: A waste product made by the breakdown of red blood cells. The liver is responsible for removing bilirubin from the body.
  • Total protein: A measurement of the total amount of protein (albumin and globulins) in the blood.

The University of Rochester Medical Center also notes that although the above 14 substances are tested in most CMPs, some labs may measure a few additional substances that are not listed here.

What are the normal results for a CMP?

After you have a CMP test completed, your doctor will review the results and may contact you to discuss them in further detail. According to the NLM, normal results, or values, for a CMP are:

  • Albumin: 3.4 to 5.4 g/dL (34 to 54 g/L)
  • Alkaline phosphatase: 20 to 130 U/L
  • Alanine aminotransferase: 4 to 36 U/L
  • Aspartate aminotransferase: 8 to 33 U/L
  • BUN: 6 to 20 mg/dL (2.14 to 7.14 mmol/L)
  • Calcium: 8.5 to 10.2 mg/dL (2.13 to 2.55 mmol/L)
  • Carbon dioxide: 23 to 29 mEq/L (23 to 29 mmol/L)
  • Chloride: 96 to 106 mEq/L (96 to 106 mmol/L)
  • Creatinine: 0.6 to 1.3 mg/dL (53 to 114.9 µmol/L)
  • Glucose: 70 to 100 mg/dL (3.9 to 5.6 mmol/L)
  • Potassium: 3.7 to 5.2 mEq/L (3.70 to 5.20 mmol/L)
  • Sodium: 135 to 145 mEq/L (135 to 145 mmol/L)
  • Total bilirubin: 0.1 to 1.2 mg/dL (2 to 21 µmol/L)
  • Total protein: 6.0 to 8.3 g/dL (60 to 83 g/L)

The NLM adds that normal values for creatinine may vary depending on your age and that the value ranges that are considered “normal” may vary slightly based on the lab evaluating your test. This is because some labs may use different measurements or test different specimens. The University of Rochester Medical Center says other factors, including your gender and health history, will also play a role in test results.

Always talk to your doctor or the testing provider if you need help understanding or interpreting your results. These healthcare professionals can discuss what each result means and whether you need treatment or any additional testing.

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Comprehensive Metabolic Panel (CMP) FAQs

Sources

Solv has strict sourcing guidelines and relies on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations. We avoid using tertiary references.

  1. Comprehensive Metabolic Panel (CMP) (September 9, 2021)
    https://medlineplus.gov/lab-tests/comprehensive-metabolic-panel-cmp/
  2. Comprehensive Metabolic Panel
    https://www.urmc.rochester.edu/encyclopedia/content.aspx
  3. Comprehensive metabolic panel (January 24, 2021)
    https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/003468.htm

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