Lipase is a protein (enzyme) released by the pancreas into the small intestine. It helps the body absorb fat. This test is used to measure the amount of the lipase in the blood.
A sample of blood will be taken from a vein.
Do not eat for 8 hours before the test.
Your health care provider may ask you to stop taking medicines that may affect the test, such as:
You may feel slight pain on a sting when the needle is inserted to draw blood. There may be some throbbing at the site after the blood is drawn. Veins and arteries vary in size so it may be harder to take a blood sample from one person than another.
This test is done to check for disease of the pancreas, most often acute pancreatitis.
Lipase appears in the blood when the pancreas is damaged.
In general, normal results are 0 to 160 units per liter (U/L).
Normal value ranges may vary slightly among different labs. Talk to your doctor about the meaning of your test results.
Some laboratories use different measurements or may test different specimens.
Higher-than-normal levels may be due to:
This test may also be done for familial lipoprotein lipase deficiency.
There is very little risk from your blood taken.
Other uncommon risks may include:
Forsmark CE. Pancreatitis. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman's Cecil Medicine. 24rd ed. Philadelphia, PA: Saunders Elsevier; 2011:chap 146.
Tenner S, Steinberg WM. Acute pancreatitis. In: Feldman M, Friedman LS, Brandt LJ, eds. Sleisenger and Fordtran's Gastrointestinal and Liver Disease. 9th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Saunders Elsevier; 2010:chap 58.
Updated 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 A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc., Editorial Team: David Zieve, MD, MHA, Bethanne Black, Stephanie Slon, and Nissi Wang.
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