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What do elevated ferritin levels in blood tests mean?

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Elevated ferritin levels in a blood test can mean an individual has hemochromatosis, an infection, Hodgkin's disease leukemia, inflammatory conditions or a diet too high in iron, according to WebMD. It can also mean the individual has hyperthyroidism, liver disease, porphyria or type 2 diabetes, according to Mayo Clinic.

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Hemochromatosis is a significant buildup of iron in an individual's body, according to WebMD. It can be caused by genetics, certain types of anemia, thalassemia, alcoholism and having multiple blood transfusions.

Inflammatory conditions that may elevate ferritin levels include arthritis, lupus and other disorders, according to WebMD.

Porphyria includes multiple disorders caused by an enzyme deficiency affecting the skin and nervous system, according to Mayo Clinic.

Normal blood ferritin levels are 24 to 336 nanograms per milliliter for men and 11 to 307 nanograms per milliliter for women, according to Mayo Clinic. If the ferritin level is higher than normal, the individual’s doctor may analyze the results alongside tests for the possible underlying cause.

Ferritin is a protein that binds to most of the iron in the body, according to WebMD. The ferritin level in the blood is equal to the ferritin level in the body. High ferritin levels can affect how the body's organs work.

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