Vitamin A Retinol
This test measures the Vitamin A level in blood. Too much is dangerous for pregnant women.
The serum tube must be shipped wrapped in aluminum foil, no light should reach it.
Beta-carotene (pro-vitamin A) is converted into vitamin A in the body.
Vitamin A is needed for growth, for healthy skin, healthy mucous membranes, and for proper functioning of the eyes and immune system. Important sources of vitamin A are the intake of liver, fish and butter. Fruit and vegetables contain beta-carotene, a precursor of vitamin A. In addition, in the Netherlands vitamin A is added to margarine, low-fat margarine and baking and frying products.
Vitamin A deficiency can occur in a diet with an insufficient amount of vitamin A or with poor absorption of vitamin A from the diet, for example, with certain intestinal disorders. Vitamin A deficiency leads to reduced resistance, dry and flaky skin, dull hair.
With a chronic vitamin A deficiency there is a disturbance in vision. Night blindness is the first symptom of this. This can progress to total blindness through a disease called xerophthalmia. This is especially common in developing countries, where vitamin A deficiency is the leading cause of blindness.
Too much vitamin A can lead to "hypervitaminosis A. Symptoms include:
- lack of appetite
- impaired vision
- muscle pain
- eye defects
- hair loss and/or drying of skin and mucous membranes
Too much vitamin A can cause malformations of the foetus in pregnancy.
For the Netherlands, a "safe upper limit of intake" of 3000 micrograms per day (10,000 IU). To supplements may be added up to 1200 micrograms (is 4000 IU) vitamin A, which is also safe for pregnant women.
A deficiency can occur as a result of a disturbed fat digestion and / or fat absorption (fat intake), the malfunctioning of the pancreas or gastric bypass and liver disease, intestinal infections, alcoholism and anorexia nervosa. The use of, for example, vitamin pills or other supplements can also result in an excess of vitamin A. Especially pregnant women should be careful because an (excess) intake of vitamin A can damage the fetus. Women who are pregnant, or wish to become pregnant, should avoid extra vitamin A and vitamin A supplements.
The target value for vitamin A is between 1.0 and 2.2 micromol/L.
Values lower than 0.35 micromol/L indicate deficiency.52750 Retinol Vitamin A
Vitamin A µmol/L 3 5 2
Conversion factor µg/dl x 0.0349 = µmol/L
Reference value(s) Human (EN)
0 - 6 years: 0.39 - 2.26 µmol/l
7 - 12 years: 0.45 - 2.83 µmol/l
13 - 17 years: 0.50 - 3.41 µmol/l
18 years and over: 1.13 - 2.72 µmol/l
Too much vitamin A increases the risk of birth defects. If you are pregnant you are therefore advised not to take supplements with vitamin A and not to eat liver (products). Liver, liverwurst, and pâté contain a lot of vitamin A. The amount of liverwurst or pâté for 1 slice of bread contains about 1,200 micrograms of vitamin A.
If you are pregnant, there is probably no health risk to the unborn child if you eat a slice of bread with pâté or liverwurst. The safe level for vitamin A for adults is 3,000 micrograms per day. The majority of women get less than 1,200 micrograms per day through their normal diet.