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Lithium, Blood Test

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About Our Lithium, Blood Test

Note: Fasting is not required for this test.

The lithium test is used to measure and monitor the amount of lithium in the blood so health care providers can determine whether drug concentrations are within a therapeutic range.

Lithium is prescribed as a mood stabilizer to individuals with manic-depressive disorders or depression who do not respond well to other medications. Lithium is used to treat manic-depressive disorders, like bipolar disorder, and the manic phase of affective disorders, including mania. The therapeutic window is relatively small. Therapeutic drug monitoring is useful to optimize dose and avoid toxicity.

Symptoms associated with lithium toxicity may include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, confusion, and tremors. Extremely high levels can lead to stupor, seizures, and can be fatal.

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