How Do LDH Levels Relate to Lymphoma?

Elevated LDH levels indicate that lymphocytes are dividing, that red blood cells are being damaged, and that lymphoma is developing or progressing, according to However, a rise in LDH levels is a non-specific indicator of lymphoma progression and may arise from unrelated conditions.

Physicians use blood tests to measure the amount of certain chemicals and cells in blood and, subsequently, to determine the prognosis of lymphoma, states the American Cancer Society. Typical blood tests for lymphoma include the complete blood count and the lactate dehydrogenase test. Patients with progressing lymphoma have a low CDC and high levels of LDH. However, doctors must conduct additional tests to rule out the presence of viruses such as HIV and hepatitis B and C, which have similar effects.

Changes in LDH levels signal tissue damage or escalating abnormalities in the blood, notes Sharp or abnormal changes in LDH levels in patients with lymphoma indicate a transformation of the disease. Doctors monitor changes in LDH levels from five different body systems and use the results to determine the source of elevated LDH levels. These results indicate the progression of lymphoma in the tested parts of the body. Drugs such as aspirin, procainamide, narcotics and fluorides can also affect LDH levels.