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Copper (Cu) concerning Wilson’s disease

Copper (Cu) is involved in the metabolism of various proteins and enzymes. Collagen is one such protein. Copper is a key component of cartilage, ligaments, tendons and bones determining the elasticity and firmness of skin and is involved in healing processes. Taken together with zinc and vitamin C, copper strengthens the skin and helps maintain its elasticity.

Copper is important for the formation of haemoglobin and red blood cells; it helps to assimilate iron and is involved in the synthesis of melanin.  

Information on how to prepare for the tests is available HERE

Prior registration is not required; upon arrival, please go straight to reception.

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Why it is worth

To be examined at our Centre?

  • The laboratory is accredited with the ISO 15189 standard, thus you can be confident that your tests will be performed to the highest quality. 
  • The results of the tests carried out will be explained to you by our laboratory specialists. This service is only offered by a few laboratories in the country.
  • If required, we can perform further tests using the same sample of blood, for up to 7 days after the sampling.
  • No danger of damaging or mixing up the test samples due to transportation. 
  • Tests can be carried out anonymously.

Good to know

The copper test is generally recommended if Wilson’s disease is suspected. This is a hereditary disorder of copper metabolism that causes the copper to accumulate in the body. Damage to tissues and organs manifests through disorders of the nervous system, psyche and liver function. 

Copper deficiency might occur due to high intake of zinc, for those who have coeliac disease, irritable bowel syndrome or other diseases of the digestive system. 

  • anaemia;
  • lower body temperature;
  • weak immunity;
  • arrhythmic heart activity;
  • laboured breathing.

Excess copper is indicated by the following symptoms:

  • nausea;
  • vomiting;
  • stomach ache;
  • diarrhoea;
  • thinning hair;
  • insomnia.
  • iron deficiency (anaemia);
  • bone diseases;
  • neurological diseases.
  • Your test results will be ready within 20 working days. You can pick them up at the reception or, if you wish, we will email them to you.
  • For an explanation of your test results, you should call the laboratory tel. (+370 5) 247 64 17.

FAQ (frequently asked questions)

Together with the copper test, it is recommended that zinc and caeruloplasmin tests be carried out.
Copper and zinc act against each other and compete for absorption sites. Excess zinc may cause copper deficiency and vice versa. 
Caeruloplasmin binds and carries copper in the blood. The caeruloplasmin test is used together with the copper test to diagnose Wilson’s disease. 

Products rich in copper include beef liver, mushrooms, nuts, chocolates, various seeds, sea fish, pulses and cocoa.

The recommended daily intake of copper is as follows:

  • for adults – 1.5–3 mg;
  • children aged 4–18 – 1–1.6 mg;
  • children below 4 – 0.6–1 mg.

Contact your family doctor or internist or register to visit a physician specialising in this field at our Centre. For consultation prices please click HERE.

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