At a glance
Also known as
LDH; lactate dehydrogenase; total LD; total LDH; LD isoenzymes; LDH isoenzymes
Why get tested?
To help identify tissue damage in the body, and to monitor its progress.
When to get tested?
Along with other tests, when your doctor suspects that you have an acute or chronic condition that is causing tissue or cellular destruction and they want to identify and monitor the problem.
A blood sample drawn from a vein in your arm
Test preparation needed?
What is being tested?
Lactate dehydrogenase (LD) is an enzyme that is found in cells throughout the body.
Only a small amount of LD is usually detectable in the blood. However, when cells are damaged or destroyed, they release LD into the bloodstream, causing blood levels to rise. For this reason, LD is used as a general marker of injury to cells. This also happens when blood cells are destroyed in the bloodstream, such as in a form of anaemia known as haemolytic anaemia.
In the past, special tests were done to work out what type of tissue the LD was released from. These tests, known as `LD isoenzymes’ are not done routinely any more because there are better tests available.
How is the sample collected for testing?
A blood sample is obtained by inserting a needle into a vein in the arm.
Is any test preparation needed to ensure the quality of the sample?
No test preparation is needed.