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Gut Hormones

Blood Sciences Test


EDTA on ice to lab within 30 mins


Investigation of possible neuroendocrine tumours of the G.I. tract.


Rare endocrine tumours of the pancreas and gut can be detected by the measurement of circulating fasting plasma levels of these gut hormones.


  • The full profile comprises gastrin, glucagon, vasoactive intestinal polypeptide (VIP), pancreatic polypeptide (PP), somatostatin and neurotensin.
  • A request for ‘Gut hormones’ will result in all of these being assayed at a cost of £70.
  • Single hormone analyses are available (usually gastrin) and cost £30 per analyte.
  • The patient should not be receiving antacids or H2 antagonists for at least 72 hours preceding the test, or proton pump inhibitors (Omeprazole) for at least 2 weeks before the test.
  • Cimetidine is a common cause of hypergastrinaemia.


Fast the patient overnight.

Warn the Duty Biochemist (Ext. 2935) that the sample is going to be taken.

Take 7.5 ml blood into a EDTA tube

Send samples to the laboratory immediately, with the EDTA sample kept on ice.

Mark the request form for ‘Gut hormones’

Please give full details of drug therapy.


If in doubt, consult the Duty Biochemist.

Care must be taken over interpretation. For example, hypercalcaemia and achlorhydria or hypochlorhydria are far commoner causes of a raised gastrin than a gastrinoma.

Department responsible for analysis:

Assayed by the Hammersmith Pathology Center Imperial College London/Hammersmith Hospital Tel 020 8383 2148

Specimen Labelling Procedure
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