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What are thyroglobulin antibodies?

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Quick Answer

Thyroglobulin antibodies are proteins that the immune system uses to block the thyroglobulin compound, according to KidsHealth. Thyroglobulin, used by the thyroid gland, helps to control metabolism and growth hormones. Normally, antibodies are created by the immune system to fight off foreign viruses or toxins in the body. However, in certain immune disorders, the immune system mistakes healthy tissues or organs for foreign substances and creates antibodies against them.

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Full Answer

KidsHealth explains that a thyroglobulin, or TgAb, test checks the blood for any antibodies that have been made against thyroglobulin. The TgAb test measures the level of the antibodies, and for people who have certain autoimmune conditions relating to the thyroid, the levels of thyroglobulin antibodies are elevated.

Sometimes TgAb tests are given as part of routine health screenings, but sometimes they are only administered if there is a concern that a certain disease or toxicity might be present. As noted by the Medical University of South Carolina, these types of tests are also used to measure whether a medication is working, or if a medical condition is getting worse or improving. Some of the most common suspected conditions for which the TgAb test may be ordered by a doctor are thyroid tumor, autoimmune thyroiditis and Graves disease.

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