• Test Code - PL0018
  • Test Name - 5-hydroxyindoleacetic Acid (HIAA)
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Test Details & Preparation

  • 5-hydroxyindoleacetic Acid (HIAA) test is done to help diagnose and monitor treatment for a carcinoid tumour that produces serotonin.

  • 5-hydroxyindoleacetic Acid (HIAA) test is performed when you have symptoms suggestive of a carcinoid tumour, such as flushing, diarrhoea, or wheezing at intervals following treatment.

  • A 24-hour urine sample rarely, a random urine sample is required for a 5-hydroxyindoleacetic Acid (HIAA) test.

  • You may be instructed to avoid certain foods and medications prior to 5-hydroxyindoleacetic Acid (HIAA) test.

  • A significantly increased level of 5-HIAA in a 24-hour urine sample in a person with carcinoid syndrome symptoms is suggestive but not diagnostic of a carcinoid tumour.

  • Someone with symptoms may still have a carcinoid tumour even if the concentration of 5-HIAA is normal. The person may have a tumour that does not secrete serotonin or one that secretes it intermittently.

  • A person with no symptoms and normal levels of 5-HIAA is unlikely to have a serotonin-secreting carcinoid tumour.

  • In those who are being monitored following treatment for carcinoid tumour, decreasing levels of 5-HIAA indicate a response to treatment, while increasing or continued excessive concentrations indicate that the treatment has not been successful.

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