CPK or Creatine PhosphoKinase: how to interpret the results of your blood test?

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CPK or Creatine PhosphoKinase: how to interpret the results of your blood test?

Creatine phosphokinase (CPK) levels in the blood, what is it?

Behind this barbaric name hides an absolutely vital chemical substance: " creatine phosphokinase (CPK) also known as creatine kinase (CK) is an enzyme found inside certain cells - mitochondria explains Dr. François Blanchecotte, doctor of pharmacy and president of the Union of Biologists (SDB).

What is his role ? " It is the engine that allows the creation of energy in our cells: it intervenes in particular in the phenomenon of muscle contraction. Without it, it would be impossible to walk, to lift arms, to breathe ... "In other words, she is indispensable to life!

Creatine phosphokinase (CPK) can be found everywhere in the body, and it is divided into 3 subcategories according to its place of action: thus, the CPK BB intervenes in the bladder and brain, the CPK MB is localized in the heart muscle and the CPK MM has an action on the motor muscles.

How (and why) to measure creatine phosphokinase (CPK)?

" The CPK assay is not a frequent blood test: it is rather prescribed if there is suspicion of myopathy of Duchenne, myositis (ie, autoimmune muscle involvement) or central nervous system pathology. "

To know : a "normal" CPK rate is between 80 and 200 units per liter of blood. " CPK is naturally higher in babies, men, black people and athletes. It tends to decrease during the pregnancy. "

It is not possible to have a blood CPK level that is too low: " the CPK rate must be as low as possible, analyzes Dr. Blanchecotte. This chemical is not supposed to be in the blood: it is supposed to act in the heart of tissues - muscles, brain, central nervous system ... "

" The CPK MB was previously measured to diagnose a myocardial infarctionadds the specialist. Today, we will dose troponin instead. "This protein substance enters into the composition of muscle fibers (those of the heart in particular) and regulates their contraction.

Creatine phosphokinase (CPK) levels too high: what can be the causes?

Too high a level of creatine phosphokinase (CPK) in the blood can be indicative of several health concerns:

  • Muscular involvement (Duchenne myopathy, myositis, intense and violent muscular efforts, muscular dystrophy, acute rhabdomyolysis ...),
  • Cardiac involvement (myocarditis, myocardial infarction ...),
  • A stroke,
  • Endocrine pathology, (hypothyroidism ...),
  • Bone cancer or muscle.

To know : " people who receive treatment by statins (These are cholesterol-lowering drugs, that is, lowering the rate of cholesterol) will have to regularly test their CPK via a blood test "says Dr. Blanchecotte.

Thanks to Dr. François Blanchecotte, Doctor of Pharmacy and President of Union of Biologists (SDB).

Read also :

⋙ Myopathy: very promising leads in the search for treatments

⋙ Anti-inflammatories: taken regularly they could damage the muscles

⋙ Drink coffee to keep your muscles!

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