What is the Lactate Dehydrogenase Test?

The test that will measure the amount of LDH in the blood is called the lactate dehydrogenase test. It checks for tissue damage, with LDH being an enzyme found in many tissues like the kidney, liver, heart, lungs and brain. It can also be done for the conditions of pernicous anemia, megaloblastic anemia, and vitamin B12 deficiency anemia.

Preparation for the Test

There are some drugs that you may be asked to stop before taking the test. These include anesthetics, clofibrate, aspirin, fluorides, narcotics, mithramycin, and procainamide. All these can increase the amount of LDH.

The Test

Blood will be taken from the vein, or a heel, earlobe, toe, or finger. The sample of blood is then taken to the laboratory and put into a centrifuge that will rapidly spin the blood. This separates the blood between serum and cells. The serum part is where the LDH is measured. If the results are showing a raised LDH there may be a LDH isoenzymes test done.

Lactate Dehydrogenase Test Results

Normal results are 105 to 333 international units per liter. This range will vary between laboratories running the test. Abnormal results that are higher than this could mean tissue death, pancreatitis, muscular dystrophy, abnormal tissue formation, muscle injury, low blood pressure, liver disease, heart attack, hemolytic anemia, infectious mononucleosis, cerebrovascular accident, or blood flow deficiency.

This blood test is an easy test to run without anything more than a simple blood draw. It carries the risks of infection, bruising, soreness, and excessive bleeding.

Source: A.D.A.M.

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