Overview of LightChain

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Are there any risks to a free light chains test?

There is very little risk to having a blood test.You may have slight pain or bruising at the spot where the needle was put in, but most symptoms go away quickly.

Does this test pose any risks?

Having a blood test with a needle carries some risks.These include bleeding, infection, bruising, and feeling lightheaded.When the needle pricks your arm or hand, you may feel a slight sting or pain.Afterward, the site may be sore.

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How did I get it?

Light chain deposition usually occurs along with another disease affecting the whole body.The risk of developing light chain deposition varies significantly depending on the other disease that the patient has.Patients with this disease typically are over the age of 50 and have an average age of 67.The disease is more common in men than in women.

How do I get ready for this test?

You don’t need to prepare for this test.Be sure your healthcare provider knows about all medicines, herbs, vitamins, and supplements you are taking.This includes medicines that don’t need a prescription and any illegal drugs you may use.

How is AL amyloidosis diagnosed?

Many tests can be performed to diagnosis amyloidosis.A biopsy (the removal of cells or tissue) of the affected organ(s) is the most useful test.A pathologist will examine the tissue under a microscope and perform special tests to identify the exact protein that is causing the amyloidosis.

How is AL amyloidosis treated?

A doctor who specializes in blood disorders (hematologist) will create a treatment plan for you.

How is this test done?

The test is done with a blood sample.A needle is used to draw blood from a vein in your arm or hand.

Is there anything else I need to know about a free light chains test?

A free light chains test is often ordered with other tests, including an immunofixation blood test, to help confirm or rule out a diagnosis.

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What are the symptoms?

The symptoms a person has vary based on the reason for the light chain production.Symptoms can be related to the disease as it affects your body as a whole, such as weakness and fatigue, weight loss, bone pain, or numbness/tingling of your arms or legs.

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What do my test results mean?

Test results may vary depending on your age, gender, health history, the method used for the test, and other things.Your test results may not mean you have a problem.Ask your healthcare provider what your test results mean for you.

What do the results mean?

Your results will show amounts for lambda and kappa free light chains.It will also provide a comparison between the two.

What does it look like (under the microscope)?

Light chains can be seen in the kidney biopsy tissue using an electron microscope.The pathologist viewing the biopsy can tell it is light chain deposition disease because it has a different appearance from other deposition diseases.In other deposition diseases, the chains will appear to form a pattern and are found in one particular section of the kidney.In light deposition disease, the chains do not form a pattern and can be found in various sections of the kidney.The pathologist will use a special stain on the microscope to be able to see these differences.

What happens during a free light chains test?

A health care professional will take a blood sample from a vein in your arm, using a small needle.After the needle is inserted, a small amount of blood will be collected into a test tube or vial.You may feel a little sting when the needle goes in or out.This usually takes less than five minutes.

What is a free light chains test?

Light chains are proteins made by plasma cells, a type of white blood cell.Plasma cells also make immunoglobulins (antibodies).Immunoglobulins help protect the body against illness and infections.Immunoglobulins are formed when light chains link up with heavy chains, another type of protein.When light chains link up with heavy chains, they are known as bound light chains.

What is AL (light chain) amyloidosis?

Light chains are pieces of antibodies made by white blood cells, specifically plasma cells, in the bone marrow.In AL amyloidosis, a group of plasma cells make too many light chains, which misfold and bind together to form amyloid fibrils.The fibrils are then deposited in organs.The most common organs affected are the heart and kidneys.Light chain amyloidosis can also affect the stomach, large intestine, liver, nerves, skin and can cause an enlarged tongue.The condition can cause problems with one or more parts of the body.

What is amyloidosis?

Amyloidosis (am-uh-loy-doh-sis) is a protein disorder.In this disease, proteins change shape (misfold), then bind together and form amyloid fibrils which deposit in organs.As amyloid fibrils build up, the tissues and organs may not work as well as they should.

What is it used for?

A free light chains test is used to help diagnose or monitor plasma cell disorders.

What is Light Chain Deposition Disease?

Your body fights infection with antibodies.Antibodies are made up of small protein segments called light chains and heavy chains.Certain cells in your body called B-cells often make “extra” light chains, that are broken down into small pieces by the kidney, which are then reabsorbed and used again in your body.

What is the outlook (prognosis) for persons with AL amyloidosis?

Amyloidosis is a long term (chronic) disease that can be controlled.Early diagnosis and treatment are the keys to managing the disease before it becomes advanced.

What is the prognosis?

The outcome of patients with light chain deposition disease remains uncertain.In large part this is related to the effects of light chains in other organs and not necessarily due to kidney disease.Patient survival from the time that symptoms begin has ranged from 1 month to 10 years.Although the prognosis for long term kidney health is poor, there are some studies which have shown that some patients have done relatively well.

What is the treatment?

Therapy usually is focused on treating the underlying disease, and can vary.There are some things we can do to help reduce further damage done to the kidney by the light chain deposition.These include decreasing the amount of calcium in your urine, which is done by staying well hydrated, and reducing the amount of acid in the urine.Sometimes patients will take a diuretic, which is a medicine to increase the amount of urine a person makes.

What is this test?

This test looks for signs of antibodies called immunoglobulins in your blood.

What might affect my test results?

Other factors aren’t likely to affect your results.

Why do I need a free light chains test?

You may need this test if you have symptoms of a plasma cell disorder.

Why do I need this test?

You may need this test if your healthcare provider suspects multiple myeloma or another problem with your plasma cells.

Will I need to do anything to prepare for the test?

You don’t need any special preparations for a free light chains test.

History of LightChain

  • In 2008, Bitcoin pioneered the centripetal cryptocurrency and also became the most important and successful application of Blockchain 1.0.