What is Fibrinogen Degradation Product (FDP) test?

Fibrinogen degradation product (FDP) test is a blood test that checks for the substances that are left behind in the blood after a clot dissolves. The test is done to check for blood clotting disorders. 

Fibrinogen is a glycoprotein that plays an important role in the coagulation pathway. Whenever you get injured, your body breaks down fibrinogen into an insoluble protein called fibrin. This fibrin forms a mesh at the injury site stopping the bleeding. As the site heals, the fibrin mesh is broken down, releasing tiny fragments of protein into the bloodstream. These fragments are called fibrin degradation products or FDPs.

FDPs, when present in a significant amount in the body, can disrupt the equilibrium of blood and lead to haemorrhage - one of the most common complications of blood clotting disorders. Thus, to understand the origin of specific symptoms related to blood clotting, your doctor may order this test.

One of the prominent fragments formed during the breakdown process of cross-linked fibrin is called the D-dimer. The evaluation of D-dimer in blood correlates better with the process of fibrinolysis. So, along with this test, your doctor may order a separate test for checking the levels of D-dimer in your blood. (Read more: D-dimer test)

An FDP test is sometimes also referred to as fibrin split products or fibrin breakdown products.

  1. Why is a Fibrinogen Degradation Product (FDP) test performed?
  2. How do you prepare for a Fibrinogen Degradation Product (FDP) test?
  3. How is a Fibrinogen Degradation Product (FDP) test performed?
  4. Fibrinogen Degradation Product (FDP) test results and normal range

Your doctor may order the FDP test if you show symptoms associated with any blood clot-dissolving disorders like acute occlusive vascular disease or disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC). Since the presence of FDPs in the blood is an indicator of a recent clot formation, the test would help to check that all the proteins of the clot-forming cascade are working properly. 

Symptoms of acute occlusive vascular disease include:

  • Pallor
  • Pain
  • Inability to maintain core body temperature
  • Stinging sensation in the body
  • Paralysis

Symptoms of DIC include:

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Usually, an FDP test does not require any special preparation. Discuss with your doctor about all the medicines that you are taking, as some medicines are known to interfere with the test results. For instance, barbiturates can lead to higher-than-normal test results. Your doctor may ask you to modulate the course of a few medicines or stop them completely for a short period. These medicines may include the following blood thinners: 

  • Urokinase
  • Aspirin
  • Streptokinase
  • Heparin

Do not stop or change the course of any medicine on your own. Speak to your doctor first and follow their instructions.

A technician or nurse will collect a small amount of blood from a vein in your arm using a clean and sterilised needle - you might feel slight pain as the needle goes in. The blood will be transferred to a container and sent to the laboratory for testing. 

After the test, some people experience temporary throbbing or bruising at the needle insertion site.

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Normal results:

Normal results for an FDP test can vary from one laboratory to the other as most labs have their own standards and procedures.

Usually, the results are reported as normal when the values are less than 10 µg/mL (for serum sample) or less than 5 µg/mL (for plasma sample). 

Abnormal results:

If the values reported in the test are above the normal range, they are considered abnormal. The following could be the reasons for higher values:

Consult your doctor to understand what the results exactly mean for you. Your doctor might order further tests to diagnose the underlying condition in case of abnormal results.

Disclaimer: All results must be clinically correlated with the patient’s complaints to make a complete and accurate diagnosis. The above information is provided from a purely educational point of view and is in no way a substitute for medical advice by a qualified doctor.


  1. Levi M. Disseminated intravascular coagulation. In: Hoffman R, Benz EJ, Silberstein LE, et al, eds. Hematology: Basic Principles and Practice. 7th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2018:chap 139.
  2. Chernecky CC, Berger BJ. Fibrinogen breakdown products (fibrin degradation products, FDP) - blood. In: Chernecky CC, Berger BJ, eds. Laboratory Tests and Diagnostic Procedures. 6th ed. St Louis, MO: Elsevier Saunders; 2013:525-526.
  3. Science Direct (Elsevier) [Internet]; Fibrinogen Degradation Product
  4. University of Rochester Medical Center [Internet]. Rochester (NY): University of Rochester Medical Center; Fibrin Fibrinogen Degradation Products
  5. Schafer AI. Hemorrhagic disorders: disseminated intravascular coagulation, liver failure, and vitamin K deficiency. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman-Cecil Medicine. 25th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2016:chap 175.
  6. Napotilano M, Schmair AH, Kessler CM. Coagulation and fibrinolysis. In: McPherson RA, Pincus MR, eds. Henry's Clinical Diagnosis and Management by Laboratory Methods. 23rd ed. St Louis, MO: Elsevier; 2017:chap 39.
  7. Wilson DD. Manual of Laboratory & Diagnostic Tests. Laboratory and Diagnostic Tests. McGraw Hill. 2008. Pp:260,261.
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