Lipase Test

What is a lipase blood test?

The lipase test is a blood test. It measures the amount of an enzyme called lipase in the blood. Enzymes are chemicals that help the cells of your body work.

Lipase is made by the pancreas, which is an organ in your upper belly behind your stomach. Lipase helps you digest fats in the food you eat.

Why is it done?

This test is done to check for problems with your pancreas. For example, it may be done to check for pancreatitis, which is swelling and irritation of the pancreas. The pancreas makes digestive enzymes and insulin. The digestive enzymes flow into the small intestine to help your body break down food. Insulin goes into the blood to control the level of sugar in your blood.

How do I prepare for this test?

Your healthcare provider will tell you when to stop eating and drinking before the test. Food and drink before the test will affect the results.

Make sure your healthcare provider knows about any medicines, herbs, or supplements that you are taking. You may need to avoid taking certain medicines before the test because they might affect the test result. Ask your provider before you stop taking any of your regular medicines.

Talk to your healthcare provider if you have any questions about the test.

How is the test done?

Having this test will take just a few minutes. A small amount of blood is taken from a vein in your arm with a needle. The blood is collected in tubes and sent to a lab.

Ask your healthcare provider when and how you will get the result of your test.

What does the test result mean?

A high level of lipase may be caused by:

  • Pancreatitis
  • Gallstones
  • An ulcer that has made a hole in the stomach and is irritating the pancreas
  • Cancer of the pancreas
  • A medicine you have taken

What if my test result is not normal?

Test results are only one part of a larger picture that takes into account your medical history and current health. Sometimes a test needs to be repeated to check the first result. Talk to your healthcare provider about your result and ask questions such as:

  • If you need more tests
  • What kind of treatment you might need
  • What lifestyle, diet, or other changes you might need to make
Developed by RelayHealth.
Adult Advisor 2015.1 published by RelayHealth.
Last modified: 2014-02-11
Last reviewed: 2014-02-07
This content is reviewed periodically and is subject to change as new health information becomes available. The information is intended to inform and educate and is not a replacement for medical evaluation, advice, diagnosis or treatment by a healthcare professional.
Copyright ©1986-2015 McKesson Corporation and/or one of its subsidiaries. All rights reserved.

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