5-Hydroxyindoleacetic Acid
(5-HIAA)

Alternate Names

  • HIAA
  • Serotonin Metabolite

Cancers that form in the intestinal tract or lungs (carcinoid tumors) release large amounts of the hormone serotonin, which is then broken down to 5-HIAA by the liver. 5-HIAA is then removed from the body by the kidneys. 5-HIAA urine levels are an indirect measurement of serotonin blood levels, and are used to diagnose carcinoid tumors, and monitor how well you are responding to treatment. High urine levels are also seen in nutrient absorption diseases or cystic fibrosis; decreased levels are seen in people who are suffering from depression or migraines. There are many medications that can affect 5-HIAA levels.

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