Adenosine Deaminase (ADA) Test
The cells in our body produce an enzyme known as adenosine deaminase (ADA). Adenosine deaminase plays an important role in the activation of lymphocytes – a type of White blood cells that fight infections. During infections, especially those caused by mycobacterium tuberculosis (TB), increased amounts of ADA are produced in the pleural fluid of the lungs. The adenosine deaminase test helps in supporting the diagnosis of infections caused by tuberculosis bacteria, by measuring the amount of ADA in the pleural fluid.
Why is the test performed?
The test may be used as a supportive test along with other tests to help diagnose or rule out the presence of mycobacterium tuberculosis infection in the lining of the lungs (pleurae). Though the test is not definitive, it does support the diagnosis of TB.
When is the test ordered?
The test may be ordered by a physician if an individual is suffering from fluid accumulation (pleural fluid) in the chest cavity with symptoms indicative of tuberculosis like fever, chills, chronic cough with bloody sputum, chest pain, and unexplained weight loss.
How is the sample collected?
Pleural fluid is collected by the physician.
How to prepare for the test?
No special preparations are required for this test.