The LDH blood test is an essential diagnostic tool that measures the serum lactate dehydrogenase (LD) levels in your body. This enzyme plays a major part in many metabolic activities and can give helpful data about an individual's general wellbeing. In this blog post, we will delve deep into understanding the importance of LDH blood tests and how they aid in diagnosing potential health issues.

As you continue reading, you'll learn about different types of lactate dehydrogenase and their distribution across bodily tissues. We will also discuss how to prepare for an LDH blood test, including fasting requirements and physical activity considerations.

Interpreting your results is crucial; hence, we'll guide you through normal vs high range values as well as factors affecting result interpretation. Furthermore, we will explore additional tests after initial diagnosis like isoenzyme electrophoresis and other relevant diagnostic procedures.

Lastly, we'll highlight the advantages of an LDH blood test such as cost-effectiveness and convenience factors while providing information on finding nearby testing locations and steps involved in getting tested for lactate dehydrogenase levels.

Table of Contents:

Understanding LDH Blood Test

The LDH blood test is an essential diagnostic tool that measures the levels of lactate dehydrogenase (LD) in your body. The enzyme LD is responsible for transforming sugar into energy and can be present in multiple tissues of the body. By examining LD concentrations, medical practitioners can identify hazardous conditions such as heart attacks, malignancies, muscular dystrophy, liver disorders, and irregular blood circulation. In this section, we will discuss what lactate dehydrogenase is and its significance in diagnosing different health issues.

What is Lactate Dehydrogenase (LD)?

Lactate dehydrogenase (LD) is an enzyme that helps turn pyruvate into lactate during anaerobic glycolysis, a process that helps make energy when there isn't enough oxygen.  Since it's present in almost all body tissues, like muscles, heart cells, kidneys, or liver; any damage or injury to these organs may result in increased LD concentrations within your bloodstream.

Role of LD in Diagnosing Health Issues

  • Myocardial Infarction: Elevated levels of serum LD are often observed after a heart attack due to damaged cardiac tissue releasing more enzymes into circulation.
  • Cancer:A high concentration of certain types of lactate dehydrogenase isoforms might indicate malignancy or tumor growth within specific organs such as lungs or pancreas.
  • Muscular Dystrophy:In patients with muscle disorders like Duchenne muscular dystrophy, LD levels tend to be higher than normal due to muscle tissue breakdown.
  • Liver Disease:Increased serum lactate dehydrogenase concentrations can also suggest liver dysfunction or damage caused by conditions like hepatitis or cirrhosis.
  • Abnormal Blood Flow:Inadequate blood supply (ischemia) to tissues might lead to elevated LD levels as cells become deprived of oxygen and undergo anaerobic metabolism for energy production.

By measuring the amount of LD in one's blood, physicians can detect possible health issues that may need further examination. It's important to note that while high LD levels may indicate an underlying issue, additional tests are often needed for a definitive diagnosis.

Understanding LDH blood test is a complex and intricate topic, however, understanding the different types of lactate dehydrogenase can help us to better understand how this test works. Differentiating between the various isoforms helps in accurately diagnosing health issues, which will be discussed further in the next heading.

Key Takeaway: 

The LDH blood test can be used to detect possible health issues such as heart attack, cancer, muscular dystrophy, liver disease, or abnormal blood flow by measuring lactate dehydrogenase levels in the body. This enzyme is present in almost all body tissues, and any damage or injury to these organs may result in increased LD concentrations within your bloodstream. However, additional tests are often needed for a definitive diagnosis.

Types of Lactate Dehydrogenase

The LDH blood test measures the levels of lactate dehydrogenase (LD), an enzyme responsible for converting sugar into energy. Five distinct isoforms of LDH exist, each being more prominent in certain body tissues. Knowing which type is elevated helps determine potential underlying conditions and guide appropriate treatment plans.

LDH Isoform Distribution Across Body Tissues

Lactate dehydrogenase exists in five distinct isoforms, numbered from 1 to 5. Each isoform has its primary location within various tissues:

  • LD 1: Found mainly in heart muscle and red blood cells.
  • LD 2: Predominantly present in white blood cells and some other tissues like kidneys.
  • LD 3: Mostly found in lungs, pancreas, and lymph tissue.
  • LD 4: Abundant in skeletal muscles, liver, and smooth muscle cells such as those lining blood vessels.
  • LD 5:Primarily located within liver tissue but also detected at lower levels elsewhere throughout the body including skeletal muscles..

    The Importance of Identifying Specific Isoforms

    Determining which particular LDH isoform is elevated can provide valuable information about possible health issues affecting certain organs or systems. For example,

      • An increase in LD 1 and LD 2 levels might indicate a myocardial infarction (heart attack).
      • Elevated LD 3 levels could suggest lung or lymphatic system disorders.
      • A rise in LD 4 and LD 5 concentrations may point to liver disease, muscle injury, or other conditions affecting the skeletal muscles.
      • By identifying specific isoforms of lactate dehydrogenase, doctors can narrow down potential causes for elevated enzyme levels and develop targeted diagnostic plans. By utilizing this technique, medical professionals can guarantee that patients are given the proper treatment based on their individual health requirements.


LDH is an important enzyme to understand when evaluating overall health, and knowing the different isoforms can help you better interpret test results. Preparing for an LDH blood test involves understanding fasting requirements as well as physical activity considerations.

Key Takeaway: 

The LDH exam evaluates the concentration of lactate dehydrogenase (LD), an enzyme involved in sugar metabolism. Five different isoforms of LD exist, each found predominantly in a particular area of the body. Identifying specific isoforms can provide valuable information about possible health issues affecting certain organs or systems and guide appropriate treatment plans.

How to Prepare for an LDH Blood Test

Preparing adequately for your LDH blood test is essential to ensuring accurate results. Your doctor may recommend certain preparations, such as fasting or avoiding strenuous exercise, before the test. Following these guidelines will help you avoid factors that could temporarily affect enzyme levels and lead to inaccurate readings.

Fasting Requirements

In some cases, your healthcare provider might ask you to fast before taking the LDH blood test. Fasting typically involves not consuming any food or beverages (except water) for a specified period - usually 8-12 hours - prior to the test. This is because certain foods and drinks can cause temporary fluctuations in lactate dehydrogenase levels, leading to misleading results. Be sure to follow your doctor's instructions regarding fasting if they are provided.

Physical Activity Considerations

Strenuous physical activity can also impact LDH levels in the body temporarily; therefore, it's crucial that you avoid intense workouts or heavy lifting within 24 hours of taking the test. Engaging in high-intensity exercises shortly before having your blood drawn may result in elevated enzyme concentrations unrelated to underlying health issues being investigated by this diagnostic tool.

  • Abstain from running extended distances or taking part in high-impact interval training (HIIT).
  • Skip weightlifting sessions involving heavy weights and multiple repetitions.
  • Consider engaging in low-impact activities like walking or yoga instead of vigorous exercise on the day before testing.

Taking these precautions before your LDH blood test will help ensure accurate results, allowing healthcare providers to identify potential health concerns and recommend appropriate follow-up testing or treatment options. Remember that following your doctor's guidelines for fasting and physical activity is essential in obtaining the most reliable information from this diagnostic tool.

It is important to understand the preparation requirements for an LDH blood test in order to ensure accurate results. Now that you know how to prepare, let us move on to analyzing your results.

Key Takeaway: 

To ensure accurate results from an LDH blood test, it is important to follow your doctor's instructions regarding fasting and physical activity. Fasting for 8-12 hours before the test may be required, as certain foods and drinks can cause temporary fluctuations in enzyme levels. Additionally, avoiding strenuous exercise within 24 hours of the test will help prevent elevated enzyme concentrations unrelated to underlying health issues being investigated by this diagnostic tool.

Interpreting Your Results

High levels of this enzyme may indicate potential health concerns such as myocardial infarction or liver disease. However, interpreting these results requires a careful analysis of various factors that can influence serum concentrations.

Normal vs High Range Values

It is essential to understand the difference between normal and high range values when interpreting your LDH blood test results. The normal range for lactate dehydrogenase varies depending on factors like age, sex, and testing laboratory standards. Generally speaking, a typical reference range falls between 140-280 units per liter (U/L). If your test result shows an elevated level above this range, it could be indicative of an underlying medical condition requiring further investigation.

Factors Affecting Results Interpretation

Besides comparing your LDH levels with standard reference ranges, several other factors should be considered when interpreting the results:

  • Tissue specificity: As mentioned earlier in this article, there are five different isoforms of lactate dehydrogenase found throughout the body. Each type has its specific location where it's most abundant; thus, identifying which isoform is elevated helps determine potential underlying conditions.
  • Clinical context: It is crucial to consider any existing symptoms or known medical conditions while evaluating LDH blood test results since multiple issues can contribute to increased serum concentrations.
  • Potential false positives/negatives: Certain medications or strenuous physical activity before testing might temporarily affect enzyme levels, leading to inaccurate readings (source). It is essential to discuss any such factors with your healthcare provider.

An elevated LDH level may suggest potential health issues that require further investigation or treatment; however, it is not a definitive diagnosis. An elevated LDH level can indicate potential health issues that should be investigated or treated, and further tests may be recommended based on the results of your LDH blood test. Your physician may advise extra assessments, taking into account the outcomes of your LDH blood examination and other pertinent medical details.

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Interpreting your results can be a complex process, so it is important to understand the normal and high range values of an LDH blood test. Moreover, age and gender can play a role in the interpretation of these values. Moving on, additional tests may be necessary after initial diagnosis in order to confirm or rule out potential causes for elevated levels of LDH.

Key Takeaway: 

The LDH exam looks at the amount of lactate dehydrogenase in the body, which may suggest issues such as liver illness or a heart attack. It is important to understand normal vs. high range values, consider tissue specificity, clinical context, and potential false positives/negatives when interpreting results. An elevated LDH level does not provide a definitive diagnosis but serves as an indicator of potential health issues requiring further investigation or treatment. offers affordable testing options across most cities in the U.S., without needing a doctor's visit.

Additional Tests After Initial Diagnosis

After receiving the results of your standard LDH blood test, your doctor may recommend additional tests to further investigate and pinpoint the underlying cause behind elevated lactate dehydrogenase levels. These diagnostic procedures can help identify specific health issues and guide appropriate treatment plans.

LDH Isoenzyme Test

Isoenzyme electrophoresis is a technique used to separate different forms of lactate dehydrogenase present in the blood sample. This procedure helps determine which specific isoform is elevated, providing valuable information about potential underlying conditions. For example, an increase in LD 1 or LD 2 could indicate myocardial infarction, while high levels of LD 5 might suggest liver disease.

Other Relevant Diagnostic Tests

In addition to isoenzyme electrophoresis, other diagnostic tests may be recommended based on initial findings from the LDH blood test:

  • Chest X-ray: A chest X-ray can help detect lung-related issues such as pneumonia or pulmonary embolism that could contribute to increased serum concentrations of certain lactate dehydrogenase isoforms.
  • Echocardiogram: An echocardiogram, which uses sound waves to create images of your heart's structure and function, can reveal signs of myocardial infarction or other heart-related issues.
  • Liver function tests: A series of blood tests, known as liver function tests, can help assess liver health and identify potential causes behind elevated LD5 levels.
  • Muscle biopsy: In cases where muscular dystrophy is suspected, a doctor may perform a muscle biopsy to examine the tissue for signs of damage or degeneration. This procedure involves removing a small sample of muscle tissue for further analysis under a microscope.

Working with your medical practitioner is key to deciding which extra assessments are required, depending on the signs and your medical background. By conducting these follow-up tests, doctors can develop an accurate diagnosis and create an effective treatment plan tailored to your specific needs.

After considering the initial diagnosis, additional tests such as isoenzyme electrophoresis and other relevant diagnostic tests may be recommended. Moving on to the advantages of LDH blood test, cost-effectiveness and speed are two key factors that make this a desirable option for many patients.

Key Takeaway: 

After receiving the results of an LDH blood test, doctors may recommend additional diagnostic procedures such as isoenzyme electrophoresis to pinpoint underlying health issues. These tests can identify specific conditions and guide appropriate treatment plans, including chest X-rays for lung-related issues or liver function tests for elevated LD 5 levels. It is essential to collaborate with medical professionals in order to establish an exact diagnosis and a treatment plan that caters to individual signs and health history.

Advantages of LDH Blood Test

The LDH blood test offers several benefits for individuals seeking to identify potential health issues. By measuring the levels of lactate dehydrogenase in the body, this cost-effective and convenient method can provide valuable insights into a person's overall well-being.

Cost-effectiveness of the Test

One major advantage of the LDH blood test is its affordability compared to other diagnostic procedures. While some tests may require expensive imaging or invasive techniques, an LDH test simply requires a small blood sample. The affordability of the LDH test makes it a viable option for those who are concerned about their health but may not have the financial means to pursue more expensive diagnostic procedures.

Speed and Convenience Factors

In addition to being affordable, an LDH blood test is also quick and easy to perform. Most testing facilities can process your results within a few days, allowing you and your healthcare provider to make informed decisions about any necessary follow-up care or treatment plans promptly.

  • Ease of access: You don't need a doctor's visit or referral for an LDH blood test at - simply choose your desired lab location from their Find a Location page, select your preferred tests, and add them to your shopping cart.
  • No appointment needed: Once you've paid for your selected tests using a credit card on website, print out the lab request form they provide via email confirmation. Then head over whenever it’s most convenient during regular business hours - no appointments required.
  • Quick turnaround: After your blood is drawn at the lab, you can expect to receive your results within a few days via email. This allows for faster diagnosis and treatment of any potential health issues.

In summary, the LDH blood test offers numerous advantages in terms of cost-effectiveness, speed, and convenience. The LDH blood test can offer a convenient, affordable way of gaining insight into one's health status, helping people to be proactive in managing their wellbeing.

The LDH blood test is a practical and handy way to evaluate lactate dehydrogenase concentrations, making it an optimal selection for those wishing to maintain their well-being. By finding nearby testing locations and following the necessary steps, you can easily get tested for lactate dehydrogenase levels in no time.

Key Takeaway: 

The LDH blood test is a cost-effective and convenient way to measure lactate dehydrogenase levels in the body, providing valuable insights into overall well-being. The LDH blood test is an economical alternative to other diagnostic methods, requiring no appointments or physician visits and being simple to carry out. The affordability of the LDH blood test makes it available to those who may be worried about their health but unable to access other more expensive diagnostic procedures.

How to Get Tested for Lactate Dehydrogenase Levels

If you're interested in getting an LDH blood test, the process is simple and convenient. In just a few steps, you can have your lactate dehydrogenase levels checked and gain valuable insights into your health.

Finding Nearby Testing Locations

To locate a lab testing facility near you, visit's Find a Location page. At, you can find details about labs that are available in numerous cities throughout the U.S., without needing a doctor's appointment or referral to get tested. No medical appointment or referral is necessary for testing at these locations.

Steps Involved in Getting Tested

  1. Selecting the desired test: Browse through Discounted Labs' selection of tests and choose the one that best suits your needs. For example, if you want to check your lactate dehydrogenase levels, select the "LDH Blood Test" option from their list of available tests.
  2. Paying for the test: Once you've chosen your desired test(s), add them to your shopping cart and proceed to checkout. Pay securely using a credit card online.
  3. Printing out lab request form: After completing payment, print out the provided lab request form which includes all necessary details about your selected tests as well as any specific instructions required before taking them (such as fasting).
  4. Scheduling an appointment (optional): While walk-ins are usually accepted at most locations, it might be helpful to schedule an appointment ahead of time by contacting the laboratory directly or booking online through their website.
  5. Visiting the lab and getting your blood drawn: Bring your printed lab request form to the testing facility. A trained phlebotomist will draw a small sample of blood from your arm, which will then be sent for analysis.

Once your test results are ready, they'll be available online through Discounted Labs' secure portal. You can review them at any time and share them with your healthcare provider if needed.

The LDH blood test is an important tool in detecting potential health issues related to elevated lactate dehydrogenase levels. By utilizing the LDH blood test, you can gain valuable insight into your health and identify any potential issues that may require further investigation or treatment.

Key Takeaway: 

To get an LDH blood test, simply select the desired test on Discounted Labs' website, pay for it online, and print out the lab request form. Then, have a trained phlebotomist draw your blood at a nearby lab testing facility. Results will be available online through their secure portal for review and sharing with healthcare providers if needed.

Frequently Asked Questions LDH Blood Test

What would a high level of LDH in the blood mean?

A high level of lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) in the blood typically indicates tissue damage or disease, as LDH is released when cells are damaged. Elevated levels can be associated with various conditions such as heart attack, liver disease, kidney disease, muscle injury, and certain cancers. However, further testing is needed to determine the specific cause.

What diseases cause high LDH?

Several diseases can lead to elevated LDH levels including heart attacks, liver diseases like hepatitis and cirrhosis, kidney disorders such as acute renal failure and glomerulonephritis, lung injuries like pneumonia or pulmonary embolism, anemia due to hemolysis or vitamin B12 deficiency and some types of cancer.

What cancers does LDH detect?

Elevated LDH levels may be observed in several types of cancer including lymphoma (both Hodgkin's and non-Hodgkin's), leukemia (acute myeloid leukemia, chronic lymphocytic leukemia), multiple myeloma,
and testicular cancer. It should be noted that while increased levels might suggest malignancy presence; they cannot confirm it without additional diagnostic tests.

Can LDH be falsely elevated?

Yes,LDH can sometimes show false elevations due to factors unrelated to disease or tissue damage. These factors include hemolysis (destruction of red blood cells) during the blood draw, intense exercise before testing, and certain medications such as aspirin or narcotics. Therefore, it is essential to consider these factors when interpreting LDH test results.


It can provide valuable insight into your overall health, allowing you to take the necessary steps for treatment if needed. Grasping the workings and implications of its results can assist in making informed choices regarding one's care. Whether you are looking for an initial diagnosis or additional tests after an initial diagnosis, the LDH blood test is an excellent tool that should be considered as part of any comprehensive healthcare plan.

Take control of your health today and get an LDH blood test from, the most affordable lab testing provider in the U.S., without ever having to step foot into a doctor's office!