Why is maintaining a normal blood volume so important?

Maintaining normal blood volume or “euvolemia” is critical to ensuring vital organs are adequately perfused or properly oxygenated. Levels of total blood volume as well as the primary components of blood, plasma and red blood cells, can be too high or too low vary in a broad range of acute and chronic medical conditions, including congestive heart failure, blood loss due to trauma or surgical procedures, hypertension, renal failure, syncope, and chronic fatigue syndrome. Measuring blood volume accurately and directly enables more precise diagnosis and treatment of blood volume and red blood cell abnormalities.

How does the BVA work?

The BVA-100 Blood Volume Analyzer quantifies circulating blood volume utilizing the gold standard methodology, the indicator tracer dilution technique. A dose of Volumex® Albumin I-131 tracer is injected intravascularly. Once the tracer has fully circulated in the bloodstream, a series of small blood samples are drawn. The BVA-100 automatically calculates patient blood volume by comparing the concentration of undiluted tracer prior to injection to the tracer concentration diluted in the patient blood samples.

How are BVA results reported?

The BVA-100 utilizes patient height, weight, gender, measured tracer counts and measured hematocrits to automatically generate a detailed blood volume report. The report includes three basic volume parameters: Total Blood Volume (TBV), Red Blood Cell Volume (RBCV), and Plasma Volume (PV). Each parameter is expressed in milliliters (mL) and as a percent excess/deficit versus the calculated patient ideal values to determine whether the patient has a normal blood volume (euvolemic), depleted blood volume (hypovolemic), or expanded blood volume (hypervolemic).

Where is the test performed?

Blood is drawn by the patient’s bedside through a single venipuncture and the samples are typically sent to the nuclear medicine laboratory for analysis.

Is any special patient preparation required?

No special patient preparation is required.

How long does the BVA procedure take?

The total time to prep the patient and take the blood samples is approximately 30 to 45 minutes. STAT results can be available within 30 minutes.

Does the test result in any significant radiation exposure?

No. Albumin I-131 has an average radiation dose between 10-25 microcuries. The radiation exposure from this test is significantly lower than the exposure from a standard x-ray.

Have there been any reported allergic reactions to the Albumin I-131?

No allergic reactions have been reported.

How accurate is the BVA-100 test?

The BVA process is repeatable and 98% accurate compared to the dual-isotope method.

Is the BVA-100 test reimbursed?

Yes, there are specific Medicare codes. Most insurance providers reimburse for the BVA test.