Aldolase blood test
Aldolase is a protein (called an enzyme) that helps break down certain sugars to produce energy. It is found in high amount in muscle tissue.
A test can be done to measure the amount of aldolase in your blood.
A blood sample is needed.
How to Prepare for the Test
You may be told not to eat or drink anything for 6 hours before the test. Your health care provider will tell you if it is necessary to stop taking any medicines that may interfere with this test. Tell your doctor about all the medicines you are taking, both prescription and nonprescription.
How the Test will Feel
When the needle is inserted to draw blood, some people feel moderate pain. Others feel only a prick or stinging. Afterward, there may be some throbbing or slight bruising. These soon go away.
Why the Test is Performed
This test is done to diagnose or monitor muscle or liver damage.
Other tests that may be ordered to check for liver damage include:
Other tests that may be ordered to check for muscle cell damage include:
Normal results range between 1.0 to 7.5 units per liter. There is a slight difference between men and women.
Normal value ranges may vary slightly among different laboratories. Some labs use different measurements or test different samples. Talk to your doctor about the meaning of your specific test results.
What Abnormal Results Mean
A higher than normal level may be due to:
- Damage to skeletal muscles
- Heart attack
- Liver, pancreatic, or prostate cancer
- Muscle disease such as dermatomyositis, muscular dystrophy, polymyositis
- Swelling and inflammation of the liver (hepatitis)
- Viral infection called mononucleosis
Veins and arteries vary in size from one patient to another and from one side of the body to the other. Obtaining a blood sample from some people may be more difficult than from others.
Other risks associated with having blood drawn are slight but may include:
- Excessive bleeding
- Fainting or feeling lightheaded
- Hematoma (blood accumulating under the skin)
- Infection (a slight risk any time the skin is broken)
Chinnery PF. Muscle diseases. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman’s Cecil Medicine. 24th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Elsevier Saunders; 2011:chap 229.
Review Date: 11/1/2013
Reviewed By: David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Bethanne Black, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.