High blood protein may be caused by something as simple as mild dehydration, increasing the concentration of protein in your bloodstream. In this case, the blood proteins only appear to be elevated. High blood protein may also be a warning sign of chronic inflammation or infection, particularly of the liver. Elevated levels of immune system proteins produced by the bone marrow may raise concerns about certain bone marrow diseases.
High blood protein levels also may be discovered unexpectedly if a total protein test is included in a group of routine lab tests during a health checkup.
Possible causes of high blood protein include:
- A bone marrow condition
- Dehydration (which may make blood proteins appear falsely elevated)
- Monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance
- Multiple myeloma
A high-protein diet doesn't cause high blood protein.
Nov. 16, 2011
Causes shown here are commonly associated with this symptom. Work with your doctor or other health care professional for an accurate diagnosis.
- Total protein and A/G ratio. American Association for Clinical Chemistry. http://labtestsonline.org/understanding/analytes/tp/tab/glance. Accessed Oct. 13, 2011.
- Amyloidosis and kidney disease. National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse. http://kidney.niddk.nih.gov/kudiseases/pubs/amyloidosis/. Accessed Oct. 13, 2011.
- Monoclonal gammopathies of undetermined significance. The Merck Manuals: Home Edition for Patients and Caregivers. http://www.merck.com/mmhe/sec14/ch175/ch175b.html. Accessed Oct. 13, 2011.
- What you need to know about multiple myeloma. National Cancer Institute. http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/wyntk/myeloma/AllPages. Accessed Oct. 13, 2011.
- Wilkinson JM (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Oct. 13, 2011.