Catecholamine Fractionation, Free, Urine
NY State Approved Indicates the status of NY State approval and if the test is orderable for NY State clients.
An auxiliary test to fractionated plasma and urine metanephrine measurements in the diagnosis of pheochromocytoma and paraganglioma
An auxiliary test to urine vanillylmandelic acid and homovanillic acid determination in the diagnosis and follow-up of patients with neuroblastoma and related tumors
Special Instructions and Forms Describes specimen collection and preparation information, test algorithms, and other information pertinent to test. Also includes pertinent information and consent forms to be used when requesting a particular test
High-Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC)
Includes unconjugated epinephrine, norepinephrine, and dopamine
Reporting Name A shorter/abbreviated version of the Published Name for a test; an abbreviated test name
Catecholamine Fract, Free, U
Catecholamine Fractionation, Urine
Catecholamines, 24-Hour Urine
Catecholamine Fractionation, Urine
Catecholamines, 24-Hour Urine
Specimen Type Describes the specimen type needed for testing
Specimen Required Defines the optimal specimen. This field describes the type of specimen required to perform the test and the preferred volume to complete testing. The volume allows automated processing, fastest throughput and, when indicated, repeat or reflex testing.
Container/Tube: Plastic, 10-mL urine tube (Supply T068)
Specimen Volume: 2 mL
1. Collect urine for 24 hours.
2. Add 25 mL of 50% acetic acid as preservative at start of collection. Use 15 mL of 50% acetic acid for children <5 years old. This preservative is intended to achieve a pH of between approximately 2 and 4.
3. This assay is of greatest value when the specimen is collected during a hypertensive episode.
4. Discontinue any epinephrine, norepinephrine, or dopamine injections/infusions at least 12 hours before specimen collection, unless drug monitoring is the goal.
5. Discontinue drugs that release or hinder metabolism of epinephrine, norepinephrine, or dopamine for at least 1 week before obtaining the specimen (see Cautions for details). If this is not possible for medical reasons, contact the laboratory to discuss whether a shorter drug-withdrawal period may be acceptable.
6. Do not perform the test on patients withdrawing from legal or illegal drugs known to cause rebound plasma catecholamine release during withdrawal (see Cautions for details).
1. 24-Hour volume is required.
2. See Urine Preservatives in Special Instructions for multiple collections.
Urine Preservative Collection Options
50% Acetic Acid
Forms: If not ordering electronically, submit a General Request Form (Supply T239) with the specimen.
Specimen Minimum Volume Defines the amount of specimen required to perform an assay once, including instrument and container dead space. Submitting the minimum specimen volume makes it impossible to repeat the test or perform confirmatory or perform reflex testing. In some situations, a minimum specimen volume may result in a QNS (quantity not sufficient) result, requiring a second specimen to be collected.
Specimen Stability Information Provides a description of the temperatures required to transport a specimen to the laboratory. Alternate acceptable temperature(s) are also included.
|Urine||Refrigerated (preferred)||7 days|
Clinical Information Discusses physiology, pathophysiology, and general clinical aspects, as they relate to a laboratory test
The catecholamines (dopamine, epinephrine, and norepinephrine) are derived from tyrosine via a series of enzymatic conversions. All 3 catecholamines are important neurotransmitters in the central nervous system and play crucial roles in the autonomic regulation of many homeostatic functions, namely, vascular tone, intestinal and bronchial smooth muscle tone, cardiac rate and contractility, and glucose metabolism. Their actions are mediated via alpha and beta adrenergic receptors and dopamine receptors, all existing in several subforms. The 3 catecholamines overlap but also differ in their receptor activation profile and consequent biological actions.
The systemically circulating fraction of the catecholamines is derived almost exclusively from the adrenal medulla, with small contributions from sympathetic ganglia. They are normally present in the plasma in minute amounts, but levels can increase dramatically and rapidly in response to change in posture, environmental temperature, physical and emotional stress, hypovolemia, blood loss, hypotension, hypoglycemia, and exercise.
In patients with pheochromocytoma, a potentially curable tumor of catecholamine producing cells of the adrenal medulla, or less commonly of sympathetic ganglia (paraganglioma), urine catecholamine levels may be elevated. This results in episodic or sustained hypertension and often in intermittent attacks of palpitations, cardiac arrhythmias, headache, sweating, pallor, anxiety, tremor, and nausea ("spells"). Elevations of the urine levels of 1 or several of the catecholamines also may be observed in patients with neuroblastoma and related tumors (ganglioneuroblastomas and ganglioneuromas) and, very occasionally, in other neuroectodermal tumors.
At the other end of the spectrum, inherited and acquired syndromes of autonomic dysfunction/failure and autonomic neuropathies are characterized by either inadequate production of 1 or several of the catecholamines, or by insufficient release of catecholamines upon appropriate physiological stimuli (eg, change in posture from supine to standing, cold exposure, exercise, stress).
Reference Values Describes reference intervals and additional information for interpretation of test results. May include intervals based on age and sex when appropriate. Intervals are Mayo-derived, unless otherwise designated. If an interpretive report is provided, the reference value field will state this.
<1 year: <2.6 mcg/24 hours
1 year: <3.6 mcg/24 hours
2-3 years: <6.1 mcg/24 hours
4-9 years: 0.2-10.0 mcg/24 hours
10-15 years: 0.5-20.0 mcg/24 hours
> or =16 years: <21 mcg/24 hours
<1 year: <11 mcg/24 hours
1 year: 1-17 mcg/24 hours
2-3 years: 4-29 mcg/24 hours
4-6 years: 8-45 mcg/24 hours
7-9 years: 13-65 mcg/24 hours
> or =10 years: 15-80 mcg/24 hours
<1 year: <86 mcg/24 hours
1 year: 10-140 mcg/24 hours
2-3 years: 40-260 mcg/24 hours
> or =4 years: 65-400 mcg/24 hours
Diagnosis of Pheochromocytoma:
This test should not be used as the first-line test for pheochromocytoma. PMET / Metanephrines, Fractionated, Free, Plasma (the most sensitive assay) and/or METAF / Metanephrines, Fractionated, 24 Hour, Urine (almost as sensitive and highly specific) are the recommended first-line laboratory tests for pheochromocytoma.
However, urine catecholamine measurements can still be useful in patients whose plasma metanephrines or urine metanephrines measurements do not completely exclude the diagnosis. In such cases, urine catecholamine specimens have an 86% diagnostic sensitivity when cut-offs of >80 mg/24 hour for norepinephrine and >20 mg/24 hour for epinephrine are employed. Unfortunately, the specificity of these cut-off levels for separating tumor patients from other patients with similar symptoms is only 88%. When more specific (98%) decision levels of >170 mg/24 hours for norepinephrine or >35 mg/24 hours for epinephrine are used, the assay’s sensitivity falls to about 77%.
Diagnosis of Neuroblastoma:
Vanillylmandelic acid, homovanillic acid, and sometimes urine catecholamine measurements on spot urine or 24-hour urine are the mainstay of biochemical diagnosis and follow-up of neuroblastoma; 1 or more of these tests may be elevated.
Cautions Discusses conditions that may cause diagnostic confusion, including improper specimen collection and handling, inappropriate test selection, and interfering substances
Many alterations in physiologic and pathologic states can profoundly affect catecholamine concentrations.
Any environmental factors that may increase endogenous catecholamine production should be avoided. These include noise, stress, discomfort, body position, and the consumption of food, caffeinated beverages, and nicotine. Caffeine and nicotine effects are short term, a few minutes to hours only.
Other substances and drugs that may affect the results include:
Substances that result in increased release or diminished metabolism of endogenous catecholamines:
-Monamine oxidase inhibitors (MOIs): a class of anti-depressants with marked effects on catecholamine levels, particularly if the patient consumes tyrosine rich foods, such as nuts, bananas, or cheese
-Catecholamine reuptake inhibitors including cocaine and synthetic cocaine derivatives, such as many local anesthetics, which also can be antiarrhythmic drugs (eg, lidocaine)
-Some anesthetic gases, particularly halothane
-Withdrawal from sedative drugs, medical or recreational, in particular alcohol, benzodiazepines (eg, Valium), opioids, and some central acting antihypertensive drugs, particularly Clonidine, but, generally not cannabis or other hallucinogens such as lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), mescal, or peyote
-Vasodilating drugs (eg, calcium antagonists, alpha-blockers)
-Tricyclic antidepressants usually exert a negligible effect
Substances that reduce or increase plasma volume acutely (eg, diuretics, radiographic contrast media, synthetic antidiuretic hormone [eg, desmopressin 1-deamino-8-d-arginine vasopressin: DDAVP])
Historically, a third category of potentially interfering substances was represented by molecules that are either similar in chemical structure, antibody epitopes, or chromatographic migration pattern to the catecholamines, or have metabolites that can be mistaken for the catecholamines. Our current HPLC-based assay is not subject to any significant direct interference of this kind. In most cases, the following drugs do not cause problems with the current assay that cannot be resolved: acetaminophen, allopurinol, amphetamines and its derivatives (methamphetamine, methylphenidate [Ritalin], fenfluramine, methylenedioxymethamphetamine [MDMA: ecstasy]), atropine, beta blockers (atenolol, labetalol, metoprolol, sotalol), buspirone, butalbital, carbamazepine, clorazepate, chlordiazepoxide, chlorpromazine, chlorothiazide, chlorthalidone, clonidine, codeine, diazepam, digoxin, dimethindene, diphenhydramine, diphenoxylate, dobutamine, doxycycline, ephedrine and pseudoephedrine, fludrocortisone, flurazepam, guanethidine, hydralazine, hydrochlorothiazide, hydroflumethiazide, indomethacin, insulin, isoprenaline, isosorbide dinitrate, L-Dopa, methenamine mandelate (mandelic acid), methyldopa, methylprednisolone, nitrofurantoin, nitroglycerine, oxazepam, entazocine, phenacetin, phenformin, phenobarbital, phenytoin, prednisone, probenecid, progesterone, propoxyphene, propranolol, quinidine, spironolactone, tetracycline, thyroxine, and tripelennamine.
On occasion, when interference cannot be resolved, an interference comment will be reported.
The variability associated with age, gender, and renal failure is uncertain.
Clinical Reference Provides recommendations for further in-depth reading of a clinical nature
1. Young WF Jr: Pheochromocytoma and primary aldosteronism. In Endocrine Neoplasms. Edited by A Arnold. Boston. Kluwer Academic Publishers, 1997, pp 239-261
2. Hernandez FC, Sanchez M, Alvarez A, et al: A five-year report on experience in the detection of pheochromocytoma. Ann Intern Med 2000;33:649-655
3. Pacak K, Linehan WM, Eisenhofer G, et al: Recent advances in genetics, diagnosis, localization, and treatment of pheochromocytoma. Ann Intern Med 2001;134:315-329
4. Alexander F: Neuroblastoma. Urol Clin North Am 2000;27:383-392
5. McDougall AJ, McLeod JG: Autonomic neuropathy, I. Clinical features, investigation, pathophysiology, and treatment. J Neurol Sci 1996;137:79-88
6. Lenders JW, Pacak K, Walther MM, et al: Biochemical diagnosis of pheochromocytoma: which test is best? JAMA 2002;287:1427-1434
Method Description Describes how the test is performed and provides a method-specific reference
A 1 mL aliquot of a 24-hour urine collection preserved in acid is absorbed on aluminum oxide at an alkaline pH and eluted with acid. An aliquot of the eluate is injected onto a high-performance reverse-phase paired ion-chromatography column where the catecholamines are resolved into individual components. The catechol is oxidized electronically to an O-quinone. The current generated at the detector is converted by amplifier to a voltage signal and an XY recording is generated.(Jiang NS, Machacek D: Measurement of catecholamines in blood and urine by liquid chromatography with amperometric detection. In Progress in HPLC. Vol 2. Edited by Parvez. VNU Science Press, 1987, pp 397-426; Moyer TP, Jiang NS, Tyce GM, Sheps SG: Analysis for urinary catecholamines by liquid chromatography with amperometric detection: methodology and clinical interpretation of results. Clin Chem 1979;25:256-263)
Day(s) and Time(s) Test Performed Outlines the days and times the test is performed. This field reflects the day and time the sample must be in the testing laboratory to begin the testing process and includes any specimen preparation and processing time required before the test is performed. Some tests are listed as continuously performed, which means assays are performed several times during the day.
Monday through Saturday; 8 a.m.
Analytic Time Defines the amount of time it takes the laboratory to setup and perform the test. This is defined in number of days. The shortest interval of time expressed is "same day/1 day," which means the results may be available the same day that the sample is received in the testing laboratory. One day means results are available 1 day after the sample is received in the laboratory.
2 days (not reported on Sundays)
Maximum Laboratory Time Defines the maximum time from specimen receipt at Mayo Medical Laboratories until the release of the test result
Specimen Retention Time Outlines the length of time after testing that a specimen is kept in the laboratory before it is discarded
Performing Laboratory Location The location of the laboratory that performs the test
Test Classification Provides information regarding the medical device classification for laboratory test kits and reagents. Tests may be classified as cleared or approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and used per manufacturer's instructions, or as products that do not undergo full FDA review and approval, and are then labeled as an Analyte Specific Reagent (ASR), Investigation Use Only (IUO) product, or a Research Use Only (RUO) product.
This test was developed and its performance characteristics determined by Mayo Clinic in a manner consistent with CLIA requirements. This test has not been cleared or approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
CPT Code Information Provides guidance in determining the appropriate Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) code(s) information for each test or profile. The listed CPT codes reflect Mayo Medical Laboratories interpretation of CPT coding requirements. It is the responsibility of each laboratory to determine correct CPT codes to use for billing.
LOINC® Code Information Provides guidance in determining the Logical Observation Identifiers Names and Codes (LOINC) values for the result codes returned for this test or profile.
|Result ID||Reporting Name||LOINC Code|