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Lactate Dehydrogenase

Lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) is a protein (enzyme) that speeds up chemical reactions in the body. It is found in red blood cells and in many organs, including the heart, liver, muscles, lungs, brain, and kidneys.

There are five different fractions of LDH (called isoenzymes): LDH-1, LDH-2, LDH-3, LDH-4, and LDH-5.

A blood test to measure LDH levels is done to check for damage to organs throughout the body. The amounts of each isoenzyme also may be measured to help determine what organ may be damaged. Some conditions that increase LDH levels include stroke, heart attack, anemia, and hepatitis.

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerE. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerThomas M. Bailey, MD - Family Medicine
Last RevisedMarch 26, 2012

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: March 26, 2012
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