Fatty Acids, Free (Nonester) (12 hour fast required)
12 hour fast required.
Sample should be collected in the early morning after a 12-hour fast. Blood for the NEFA procedure should be collected after an overnight fast because the level of circulating nonesterified fatty acids is strongly influenced by food ingestion. If the patient has not properly fasted, the determined level of NEFA will be elevated and not directly comparable to a normal range derived from fasting normal controls.
Knowledge of the level of nonesterified fatty acids (NEFA) in blood plasma can be helpful in the diagnosis and management of certain diseases and disorders of metabolism and in the evaluation of prospective causes of hyperlipoproteinemia. A disorder of disease that causes excessive release of a lipoactive hormone (epinephrine, ACTH, GH, etc) can induce an elevation of blood level of fatty acids. A sustained release of fatty acids from adipose cells in excess of energy needs can contribute to the development of secondary hyperlipoproteinemia.