Test Background Plasma or serum estimation is the best indicator of occupational exposure. Concentrations can be increased by iatrogenic contamination in patients on total parenteral nutrition. High concentrations of cobalt and chromium in blood are associated with increased wear of artificial hip joints and may contribute to an indication for revision of the procedure. The MHRA has advised that a concentration of >134 nmol/L is an indication of excessive wear in a metal-on-metal hip implant. Chromium deficiency has been linked to impaired glucose metabolism, however this test cannot be used to determine chromium deficiency.
Clinical Indications Prominently used for assessing wear of artificial hip joints. High concentrations of chromium are associated with increased wear of artificial hip joints and may contribute to an indication for revision of the procedure. Toxic sources of chromium include dyes, paints, and leather tanning processes.
Reference Range <10 nmol/L
Sample Required Trace element free (royal blue top)
Sample Volume 0.5 mL
Turnaround Time 2 weeks
Notes Well functioning artificial hip joints are associated with the following levels of chromium:
metal-on-metal: <45 nmol/L
metal-on-plastic: <15 nmol/L