Troponin Test

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Also known as: TnI and TnT
Formal name: Cardiac-specific Troponins I and T (cTnI and cTnT); High-sensitivity cardiac-specific Troponins I and T (hs-cTnI and hs-cTnT)
Related tests: Cardiac biomarkers, CK-MB

At a Glance

Why Get Tested?

To see if you have had a heart attack or damage to your heart muscle

When to Get Tested?

If you are having chest pain that may be due to a heart attack.

Sample Required?

A blood sample taken from a vein in the arm

Test Preparation Needed?

None

The Test Sample

What is being tested?

Troponins are proteins in muscle fibres that help to regulate muscle contraction. There are three different troponins: skeletal muscle troponin C (TnC) and two heart muscle troponins, cardiac troponin T (cTnT) and cardiac troponin I (cTnI). When there is damage to heart muscle, cTnI and cTnT are released into the blood.

 

How is the sample collected for testing?

A blood sample is taken by needle from a vein in the arm.

NOTE: If undergoing medical tests makes you or someone you care for anxious, embarrassed, or even difficult to manage, you might consider reading one or more of the following articles: Coping with Test Pain, Discomfort, and Anxiety, Tips on Blood Testing, Tips to Help Children through Their Medical Tests, and Tips to Help the Elderly through Their Medical Tests.

Another article, Follow That Sample, provides a glimpse at the collection and processing of a blood sample and throat culture.

Is any test preparation needed to ensure the quality of the sample?

No test preparation is required.

The Test

Common Questions

Ask a Laboratory Scientist

Article Sources

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NOTE: This article is based on research that utilizes the sources cited here as well as the collective experience of the Lab Tests Online Editorial Review Board. This article is periodically reviewed by the Editorial Board and may be updated as a result of the review. Any new sources cited will be added to the list and distinguished from the original sources used.