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Blood Test: Basic Metabolic Panel (BMP)

What Is a Blood Test?

By taking and testing a small sample of a person’s blood, doctors can check for many kinds of diseases and conditions. Blood tests help doctors check how the body’s organs are working and see if medical treatments are helpful.

To help your child get ready for a blood test, find out if they need to fast (not eat or drink) or should stop taking medicines before the test. Explain what to expect during the test. If your child is anxious about it, work together on ways to stay calm.

What Is a Basic Metabolic Panel (BMP)?

The basic metabolic panel (BMP) blood test helps doctors check the body’s fluid balance and levels of electrolytes, and see how well the kidneys are working.

Why Are Basic Metabolic Panels Done?

Doctors may order a BMP to learn about the levels of:

  • Glucose, a type of sugar used by the body for energy. High glucose levels may point to diabetes.
  • Electrolytes:
    • Calcium, which plays an important role in how muscles and nerves work.
    • Sodium, potassium, carbon dioxide, and chloride, which help control the body’s fluid levels and its acid-base balance. Normal levels of these electrolytes help keep cells in the body working as they should.
  • Blood urea nitrogen (BUN) and creatinine, which are waste products filtered out of the blood by the kidneys. These levels show how well the kidneys are working.

What if I Have Questions?

If you have questions about the BMP or what the test results mean, talk to your doctor.