Albumin

Albumin is a protein that is produced in the liver and released into the blood. It helps prevent blood from leaking out of blood vessels, carries medications and other substances through the blood, and is important for tissue growth and healing.

When albumin levels drop, fluid may collect in the ankles (pedal edema), lungs (pulmonary edema), or abdomen (ascites). A decrease in albumin can be caused by a poor diet (malnutrition), severe burns, kidney disease, gastrointestinal malabsorption syndromes, Hodgkin's lymphoma, diabetes, hyperthyroidism, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, or heart failure.

Last Updated: January 29, 2009

Author: Monica Rhodes

Medical Review: E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Tushar J. Vachharajani, MD, FASN, FACP - Nephrology

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