Health Information and Tools >  Complement Test for Lupus
Facebook Tweet Email Share

Main Content

Complement Test for Lupus

Topic Overview

A complement test uses a blood sample to detect a group of proteins that help the body attack foreign substances.

When there are a lot of foreign substances in the body, such as bacteria or viruses, a low level of complement means the body is trying to get rid of the foreign substances. If the body is attacking its own tissues instead of foreign substances (as in autoimmune diseases such as lupus), a low level of complement may mean that the body is attacking and damaging tissues such as the kidneys.

The complement test can be repeated at regular intervals. This helps monitor the progress of the disease.

Credits

Current as of: April 1, 2019

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine
Brian O'Brien, MD, FRCPC - Internal Medicine
Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine
Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Nancy Ann Shadick, MD, MPH - Rheumatology

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated, disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. Learn how we develop our content.