Optimal - The Blog

December 6, 2022

Creatine Kinase Should Stay Put.

Creatine kinase (CK) is an enzyme important to energy generation, so it's found in metabolically active tissues, including the heart, lungs, brain, and skeletal muscle. Total CK can be measured; further exploration can determine which tissue the CK came from if elevated. For example, CK-MB comes from the heart, CK-MM from the muscle, and CK-BB from the brain.

Elevations in CK usually mean tissue damage and may be associated with heart disease, heart attack, high blood pressure, inflammation, surgery, alcoholism, central nervous system disorders, vigorous or excessive exercise, heart disease, and heart attack. If available, measuring cardiac troponins is preferred over creatine kinase in the event of suspected myocardial infarction. 

Increased CK may also be associated with poorer outcomes for COVID-19 and an increased risk of failing hypertensive treatment. Elevations in CK seen with vigorous exercise should be monitored and addressed if persistent. Aggressive hydration and further intervention may be needed. Milder elevations may be resolved with the use of whey protein supplementation. 

Low levels of CK may be seen with decreased muscle mass or short stature, and may be associated with an increased risk of asthma.

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Tag(s): Biomarkers

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