What tests are needed to obtain a diagnosis?

There are 3 tests that together make up the Iron Panel Test. These tests look at serum ferritin, Total iron binding capacity, and serum iron. These tests need to be taken as a panel, not independently, to receive a comprehensive and accurate assessment of a potential Hemochromatosis diagnosis. 

Serum iron (SI)

This test is best conducted after fasting for at least three hours. Also, iron or vitamin C supplements should be discontinued at least three days before taking the test. Do not discontinue other medication unless your doctor tells you to.


Serum ferritin (SF)

This test measures the amount of iron contained or stored in the body. Serum ferritin reference ranges are different for adults and children. For adults, the ideal range is 50-150 ng/ml.

Total Iron Binding Capacity (TIBC)

This test tells how well your body can bind to iron. Serum iron divided by TIBC x 100% gives you important information about the transferrin-iron saturation percentage (TS%). TS% is usually 25-35%; in some people with iron overload, the TS% is very high. There are other types of iron overload where the TS% is normal. 

In the past, liver biopsy was widely used to diagnose hemochromatosis. Today, liver biopsy is not necessary to diagnose the inherited form of HHC. DNA tests are available to determine if a person has genetic hemochromatosis.

The Iron Panel test saved my life. I was one of the lucky patients that was able to stop the train before the train wreck. Today, I watch my diet and give blood every two months.
— Sam S.


Health-e-Iron, a partner of the Iron Disorders Institute offers a quick and confidential way to order your iron tests online. 

  1. Simply order your iron tests by clicking on the button below. 
  2. Print off the confidential order and take it to any LabCorp location.
  3. Results are posted to your Health-e-Iron account confidentially.