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Definition:

The lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) test measures the amount of LDH in the blood.

See also: LDH isoenzymes



Alternative Names:

LDH test; Lactic acid dehydrogenase test



How the test is performed:

The health care provider will take blood from a vein or from your heel, finger, toe, or earlobe.

The blood sample is sent to a laboratory, where it is placed in a machine called a centrifuge. The machine quickly spins the blood, which causes the liquid part (the serum) to separate from the cells. The LDH measurement is done on the serum.



How to prepare for the test:

Your health care provider may ask you to stop taking drugs that may affect the test. Drugs that can increase LDH measurements include anesthetics, aspirin, clofibrate, fluorides, mithramycin, narcotics, and procainamide.



How the test will feel:



Why the test is performed:

LDH is most often measured to check for tissue damage. The enzyme LDH is in many body tissues, especially the heart, liver, kidney, skeletal muscle, brain, blood cells, and lungs.

Other conditions under which the test may be done:



Normal Values:

A typical range is 105 - 333 IU/L (international units per liter).

Normal value ranges may vary slightly among different laboratories. Talk to your doctor about the meaning of your specific test results.



What abnormal results mean:

Higher-than-normal levels may indicate:

If the LDH level is raised, your doctor may order an LDH isoenzymes test.



What the risks are:



Special considerations:



References:

Abraham N, Carty R, DuFour D, Pincus M. Clinical enzymology. In: McPherson R, Pincus M, eds. Henry’s Clinical Diagnosis and Management by Laboratory Methods. 21st ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2006:chap 20.

Schwartz R. Autoimmune and intravascular hemolytic anemias. In: Goldman L, Ausiello D, eds. Cecil Medicine. 23rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2007:chap 164.




Review Date: 2/13/2009
Reviewed By: David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.

The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
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