Lactate Dehydrogenase
(LDH)

Alternate Names

  • Lactic Dehydrogenase
  • LDH-1
  • LDH-2
  • LDH-3
  • LDH-4
  • LDH-5
  • LDH Isoenzymes

LDH is an enzyme found in most cells of the body; the highest levels are in RBCs (red blood cells), the kidneys, muscles, brain, lungs, heart, and liver. Illness or disease in any of these tissues cause the cells to die, which releases LDH into the blood. LDH by itself is not specific to any illness or disease; when broken down into isoenzymes: LDH-1 is from the heart; LDH-2 is from the lining of the digestive system, and is the highest level found in healthy individuals; LDH-3 is from the lungs; LDH-4 is from the kidney, pancreas, and placenta; and LDH-5 is from the liver and muscle tissue. High LDH blood levels are seen in people with heart attacks; infections, injury, or diseases of the lungs, liver, intestines, pancreas, kidneys, or muscles; anemias; testicular and other cancers, and during any acute critical physical condition such as heat stroke or shock.

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