Although amyloidosis is a rare disease, it is underdiagnosed. Many people die from complications of amyloidosis without ever receiving a diagnosis.
At Stanford, your physician begins by conducting a complete medical history and physical exam. Tests for amyloidosis include:
Blood or urine test to detect the amyloid proteins
Bone marrow test and/or biopsy (tissue sample) to check for amyloid deposits
Biopsy for Amyloidosis
A biopsy that shows amyloid deposits is the best confirmation of amyloidosis. The physician usually takes the tissue sample from abdominal fat or rectum. Sometimes, the tissue comes from damaged organs such as the liver, heart, kidney or intestines.
Most of the time, you can have a biopsy done as an outpatient procedure with a local anesthetic to numb the area. You don't need to stay in the hospital overnight for the biopsy. Read more about biopsy.
Types of Amyloidosis
There are many types of amyloidosis, and they differ based on the type of protein that accumulates in the organs and other parts of the body. Learn more about amyloidosis types.
Once our specialists confirm a diagnosis of amyloidosis, we will discuss your treatment plan with you. Your specific treatment depends on the type of amyloidosis you have. Find out more about amyloidosis treatment at Stanford.
Clinical trials are research studies that evaluate a new medical approach, device, drug, or other treatment. As a Stanford Health Care patient, you may have access to the latest, advanced clinical trials.
Open trials refer to studies currently accepting participants. Closed trials are not currently enrolling, but may open in the future.