Skip to Content
Home > Wellness > Health Library > Basic Metabolic Panel
A basic metabolic panel is a blood
test that measures your sugar (glucose) level,
electrolyte and fluid balance, and
Glucose is a type of
sugar your body uses for energy. Electrolytes keep your body's fluids in
balance. They also help keep your body working normally, including your heart
rhythm, muscle contraction, and brain function. The kidneys help keep the right
balance of water, salts, and minerals in the blood. Kidneys also filter out
waste and other unneeded substances from the blood.
If you take
any medicines, such as diuretics for
high blood pressure, your doctor may order a basic
metabolic panel to see if the medicines are affecting your kidneys or your electrolytes. Your doctor also may order
this panel as part of a regular health examination or to help diagnose a
This panel measures the blood levels of blood urea nitrogen (BUN), calcium, carbon dioxide, chloride, creatinine, glucose, potassium, and sodium.
You may be asked to stop eating and drinking for 10 to 12
hours before you have this blood test.
Other Works Consulted
Chernecky CC, Berger BJ (2013). Laboratory Tests and Diagnostic Procedures, 6th ed. St. Louis: Saunders.
Fischbach FT, Dunning MB III, eds. (2009). Manual of Laboratory and Diagnostic Tests, 8th ed. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams and Wilkins.
Pagana KD, Pagana TJ (2010). Mosby’s Manual of Diagnostic and Laboratory Tests, 4th ed. St. Louis: Mosby.
ByHealthwise StaffPrimary Medical ReviewerE. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal MedicineAdam Husney, MD - Family MedicineSpecialist Medical ReviewerBrian D. O'Brien, MD - Internal Medicine
Current as ofFebruary 19, 2016
Current as of:
February 19, 2016
E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Brian D. O'Brien, MD - Internal Medicine
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2016 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
I Want To...
Our interactive Decision Points guide you through making key health decisions by combining medical information with your personal information.
You'll find Decision Points to help you answer questions about:
Get started learning more about your health!
Our Interactive Tools can help you make smart decisions for a healthier life. You'll find personal calculators and tools for health and fitness, lifestyle checkups, and pregnancy.
Feeling under the weather?
Use our interactive symptom checker to evaluate your symptoms and determine appropriate action or treatment.