Erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR)

SKU 4017 Category Tag

Additional information

Response time (working day) | Time to results


Location of analysis | Where is performed



Erythrocyte sedimentation rate, Also known as EDS (ESR), Used to assess the inflammatory process in the body. Many conditions can cause abnormal EDS, so the test is usually used in conjunction with other tests to diagnose and monitor various diseases.

ESR is directly proportional to the difference between red blood cell mass, red blood cell and plasma density, and inversely proportional to plasma viscosity. The main factor influencing ESR is the protein composition of blood plasma - the most pronounced increase in ESR is characteristic of paraproteinemic hemoblastoses (multiple myeloma, Waldenstrom's disease).

ESR is also affected by plasma pH (acidosis decreases ESR, alkalosis increases), plasma ion charge, lipids, blood viscosity, presence of anti-erythrocyte antibodies, erythrocyte count, shape and size. Erythropenia (reduction in the number of erythrocytes) accelerates sedimentation, although in the presence of crescent-shaped erythrocytes, the ESR during spherocytosis, anisocytosis may be low, since the altered shape of the cells prevents sedimentation.

With corresponding changes in leukocytosis and leukocyte count, an increase in ESR is a reliable sign of the presence of infectious and inflammatory processes in the body. Measuring the ESR in autoimmune diseases allows you to determine the stage of the disease (exacerbation or remission), evaluate its activity and the effectiveness of treatment.

An increase in ESR is not a specific indicator of any disease, however, its changes in pathology have diagnostic and prognostic significance and may become an indicator of treatment effectiveness.

When should we test the erythrocyte sedimentation rate?

The ESR test is mainly used to diagnose and monitor various pathological health conditions:

Diagnosis: Because many health problems can cause a change in ESR, this test alone cannot diagnose the condition. However, in combination with other tests, the ESR test can help you detect infections, autoimmune diseases, blood disorders, kidney disease, and many other health problems.

Monitoring: The ESR test can be used periodically to monitor the progress of the inflammatory process. It is also used to monitor the treatment of certain diseases.

An ESR test is performed if you have unexplained symptoms such as fever, muscle or joint pain, or other problems for no apparent reason. In these situations, the ESR is usually combined with other tests such as general blood tests, prophylactic tests, arthritis tests, and so on. To assess your general health and identify any health problems, if any.

Consult your doctor and discuss with him the specific purpose of the ESR test in your case.

How to prepare for the test?

No special preparation is required for the test.

Tell your doctor and lab about the medications you are taking, as some of them may affect the test results.

Research material

Venous blood

Possible interpretation of the results

ESR can be influenced by age, sex and other factors.

Test results are interpreted individually, depending on each patient's condition, which includes taking into account the patient's symptoms and other test results.

If the ESR is abnormally high, it means that the red blood cells are leaking faster than normal. This usually happens when red blood cells contain more protein, causing them to stick together.

Erythrocyte sedimentation rate increases in the following cases:

  • Pregnancy, postpartum period, menstruation;
  • Inflammatory diseases of various etiologies;
  • Paraproteinemia;
  • Neoplastic diseases (carcinoma, sarcoma, acute leukemia, lymphogranulomatosis, lymphomas);
  • Connective tissue diseases;
  • Glomerulonephritis, renal amyloidosis;
  • Severe infections;
  • Myocardial infarction;
  • Hypoproteinemia;
  • Anemia;
  • Hypo- and hyperthyroidism;
  • Internal bleeding;
  • Hyperfibrinogenemia;
  • Hypercholesterolemia;
  • Hemorrhagic vasculitis;
  • Rheumatoid arthritis.

The erythrocyte sedimentation rate decreases in the following cases:

  • Erythremia and reactive erythrocytosis;
  • A pronounced phenomenon of circulatory failure;
  • Hemoglobinopathy C;
  • Hyperproteinemia;
  • Hypofibrinogenemia;
  • Epilepsy;
  • Sickle cell anemia;
  • Viral hepatitis and obstructive jaundice (probably due to accumulation of bile acids in the blood).

It is important to remember that an ESR test alone cannot diagnose any disease or medical condition. It should be used in conjunction with other tests to detect and monitor health problems. The ESR test should always be interpreted by a physician who can explain its significance.



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