Creatine kinase

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Also known as: CK
Formal name: Creatine kinase
Related tests: CK-MB, myoglobin, troponin

At a Glance

Why Get Tested?

To determine if muscles in your body have been damaged. Previously used to determine if you are havingĀ a heart attack.

When to Get Tested?

If you have chest pain or muscle pain and weakness

Sample Required?

A blood sample drawn from a vein in the arm

The Test Sample

What is being tested?

Creatine kinase is an enzyme found in the heart, brain and skeletal muscle. Enzymes are proteins that help cells to perform their normal functions. CK occurs in three major forms, called isoenzymes:

  • CK-MB (found mostly in your heart muscle)
  • CK-BB (found mostly in your brain)
  • CK-MM (found in your heart and skeletal muscles)

CK in the blood comes mainly from your muscles. The CK in your brain almost never gets into the blood.

How is the sample collected for testing?

A blood sample is taken by needle from the arm.

Is any test preparation needed to ensure the quality of the sample?

No test preparation is needed.

The Test

Common Questions

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NOTE: This article is based on research that utilizes the sources cited here as well as the collective experience of the Lab Tests Online Editorial Review Board. This article is periodically reviewed by the Editorial Board and may be updated as a result of the review. Any new sources cited will be added to the list and distinguished from the original sources used.