Basic Metabolic Panel Test

For a healthy body, your body combines calories from food with oxygen to create energy. This process involves many complex processes and is referred to as your metabolism. Your metabolism, like your fingerprint, is unique to you.

What Is A Basic Metabolic Panel?

A basic metabolic panel is a test that measures various substances in your blood to provide essential information about your body’s metabolism. It provides key measurements of your glucose (sugar) level, fluid and electrolyte levels, kidney function, and acid-base balance. One or more abnormal results found in a basic metabolic panel reveal a problem that requires medical attention.

The Components Of A Basic Metabolic Panel

These eight blood chemical measurements make up a basic metabolic panel:

Blood Urea Nitrogen (BUN)

This measurement shows how well your kidneys are functioning to eliminate the waste product known as urea nitrogen.


Glucose is a sugar that supplies energy to your body and brain. High blood levels of glucose are a sign of a metabolic issue such as diabetes.


This electrolyte is crucial for properly functioning nerves and muscles. Healthy kidneys are essential for maintaining normal sodium levels.


Potassium is an electrolyte that is important for several reasons, including a healthy heartbeat and proper nourishment of cells.


This critical electrolyte plays a vital role in maintaining healthy blood pressure, blood volume, and acid-base balance.


This electrolyte functions as an acid buffer to help maintain your body’s acid-base balance.


This mineral helps keep your bones, muscles, nervous and cardiovascular systems healthy.


This amino acid helps provide energy for your muscles.

When Might You Need A Basic Metabolic Panel?

Your health care provider may order a basic metabolic panel as part of a routine check-up or in diagnosing kidney, acid-base balance, blood sugar, or electrolyte problems. You may also need one to monitor previous abnormal tests or evaluate symptoms such as fatigue, breathing difficulties, and confusion.

How Is The Test Performed?

The blood sample is taken from a vein inside the elbow of your arm or the back of your hand. First, your healthcare professional will clean the area with an antiseptic, and an elastic band is placed above the area to cause the vein to enlarge. Next, a small needle is inserted to withdraw the blood into a small vial.

How To Prepare For The Test

You may be asked to not eat or drink anything except water for eight hours prior to your basic metabolic panel appointment. Most medicines can still be taken as directed. However, it is best to discuss all prescription and non-prescription medications with your health care provider before your appointment.

What Else Do I Need To Know?

*This content is for informational purposes only and is not meant to replace consulting with a healthcare professional. Please consult with your primary care physician or healthcare provider before engaging in any services offered by Speedy Sticks.