Total Iron-Binding Capacity (TIBC) Test
A total iron-binding capacity (TIBC) test is a blood test used to measure the amount of transferrin in the blood: Transferrin is a protein which carries iron across the bloodstream.
The TIBC test measures the amount of transferrin available to bind to iron, providing an indication of the amount of iron in the blood. High iron levels can indicate a condition such as a hemochromatosis, while low levels can indicate anaemia.
A TIBC test can help diagnose iron deficiency or iron overload conditions. If the TIBC is high, it may indicate that iron is deficient in the blood, whereas a low TIBC may suggest an excess of iron. TIBC can also be used to monitor the effectiveness of treatments for iron-related disorders.
It also helps;
- Accurate diagnosis of iron-deficiency anaemia
- Ability to monitor the progress of treatment
- Ability to detect other types of anaemia
- Early detection of iron overload
TIBC and transferrin
Although TIBC and transferrin are two different tests, they effectively measure the same thing. Thus, you’ll likely get one or the other. TIBC is calculated by measuring the amount of transferrin in the blood and dividing it by the amount of iron the transferrin can bind.
Because transferrin is generated by the liver, if you have liver disease, your TIBC level will be low as well.