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Serotonin

The serotonin test measures the level of serotonin in the blood. Serotonin is a chemical produced by nerve cells. The serum serotonin level is a blood test to measure the amount of serotonin in your body.

Learn about the serotonin test, which may be used in combination with a 5-HIAA test to help diagnose carcinoid tumors.

Also Known as: Serotonin, Serotoninergic, 5-Hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT

Serotonin Test
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How the test is performed

Blood is typically drawn from a vein, usually from the inside of the elbow or the back of the hand. The site is cleaned with germ-killing medicine (antiseptic). The health care provider wraps an elastic band around the upper arm to apply pressure to the area and make the vein swell with blood.

Normal Values:

The normal range is 50 to 200 ng/mL (0.28 to 1.14 µmol/L).

Increase Serotonin levels in

  • Increased Serotonin synthesis: L-Tryptophan
  • Decrease Serotonin metabolism: MAO inhibitors
  • Increase Serotonin release: Amphetamines, Cocaine
  • Inhibit Serotonin uptake
    • Tricyclic Antidepressants: Amitriptyline
    • Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor (SSRI): Prozac
    • Other: Meperidine, Dextromethorphan
  • Direct Serotonin Receptor Agonists: Buspar, Imitrex
  • Dopamine Agonists: Amantadine, Wellbutrin, Levodopa
  • Other Non-specific Serotonin increase: Lithium

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