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Iron-Binding Capacity (TIBC) Blood Test Panel

* This is not a home test kit. You will need to visit a local lab for testing.

Also Known As:

Iron-Binding Capacity (IBC), Serum Iron-Binding Capacity, Total Iron-Binding Capacity, Iron Saturation Blood Test, and Unsaturated Iron Binding Capacity (UIBC)

Purpose of the TIBC Blood Test

Doctors often require an iron-binding capacity blood test when diagnosing blood-related disorders like anemias as well as liver disease, and kidney problems.

Iron, Total and Total Iron Binding Capacity (7573)
Iron and TIBC panel (001321)

What Does the TIBC Test Measure?

A total-binding capacity blood screens the amount of iron in the blood. It also evaluates the blood cell’s capacity to bind with the mineral.

TIBC tests typically calculate iron-binding capacity, the iron level in the blood, and iron saturation. With these parameters, iron deficiency and its cause can be detected, primarily when run alongside tests like the transferrin blood testferritin blood test, and mean corpuscular volume (MCV) blood test from the complete blood count (CBC) test.

Who Should Take a TIBC Lab Test?

People who show symptoms of iron deficiency anemia should book the TIBC blood test, as ordered by the healthcare provider. These symptoms include:

  • Pale skin
  • Dizziness
  • Brittle nails
  • Headaches
  • Odd cravings
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Loss of appetite
  • Tongue soreness
  • Cold hands and feet

Additionally, those diagnosed with liver and kidney disease opt to get that TIBC blood test as part of their treatment monitoring. Both conditions affect iron levels and iron-binding capacity.

Iron Panel Blood Test Preparation

You will be required to fast 12 hours before the blood collection to get the most accurate results. This means no meal and drinks within the timeframe except for water.

Women should also schedule the test before or after their menstruation. This is because menstrual bleeding naturally lowers serum iron levels.

Iron Lab Panel Results

A TIBC lab report contains the parameters: iron-binding capacity, iron (total), and iron saturation. The reference interval, which serves as the basis for the interpretation, depends on age and sex.

For example, if you choose Quest Diagnostics for your lab test, you can expect these normal ranges.

  • Iron-binding capacity
    • Male: 250 – 245 mcg/dL
    • Female: 250 – 450 mcg/dL
  • Iron, Total
    • Male: 50 – 195 mcg/dL (20 to 29 years old); 50 -180 mcg/dL (30 years old and above)
    • Female: 40 – 190 mcg/dL (20 to 49 years old); 45 -160 mcg/dL (50 years old and above)
  • Iron Saturation
    • Male: 20-48%
    • Female: 16-45%

Other laboratories may offer additional parameters and different interval references. In the case of Labcorp, the unsaturated iron-binding capacity is included in the panel. UIBC should be between 111 to 343 ug/dL to be considered normal.

Where Can I Get a TIBC Blood Test Done Near Me?

You can order the iron-binding capacity blood test online as a standalone panel or as part of the comprehensive iron profile blood test. Simply follow these steps.

Step 1: Order the TIBC blood test on our website. Download the lab test order, which is also your doctor’s order for the lab procedure.

Step 2: Choose a partner medical center using our lab locator.

Step 3: Go to the laboratory of your choice to have your blood collected.

Step 4: Expect the lab test results within 2-10 business days in your Personalabs account.

For an exact turnaround time for results, please contact us at 1-888-438-5227. We will contact the lab of your choice (Quest Diagnostics or LabCorp) as turnaround times vary depending on testing location or lab testing provider.

Additional information


LabCorp, Quest

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