Timely diagnosis and testing in particular is the key to preventing many diseases. One frequently prescribed is an examination of blood (venous) or urine for amylase content. It should be alerted if alpha amylase in the blood is increased. The reasons for this deviation can be quite serious.
To understand the value of this substance in the body, it is important to get acquainted with what it is. So amylase - alpha pancreatic - what is it? It is one of the digestive enzymes (substances that accelerate various metabolic reactions in our body), produced mainly at the cellular level by the pancreas. Salivary glands produce it in small quantities. The enzyme function is the splitting of complex carbohydrates (starch, glycogen) into simple (glucose). In order to determine if there is a deviation in its content, biochemical analysis of venous blood is most often prescribed. Occasionally examine urine.
Types of amylase, normal values
Within this group there is a classification of its own - in particular, there is total (cumulative) and pancreatic amylase. Pancreatic amylase is a component of alpha, and it takes into account only those enzymes that are produced by pancreatic cells.
Total alpha amylase, blood rate:
- age up to 2 years: from 5 to 65 units / l;
- from 2 to 70 years: 25-125;
- age over 70 years: 20-160.
Norm pancreatic amylase:
- from 0 to 0.5 years: less than 8 u / ml;
- from 0.5 to 1 year: less than 23 units / ml;
- adults and children from 1 year: less than 50 units / ml.
The delivery of venous blood to pancreatic amylase is indicated most often:
- for the diagnosis of acute or chronic pancreatitis;
- in the presence of symptoms of cholecystitis and other inflammatory processes in the abdominal organs;
- in cases of suspected cystic fibrosis - a rare hereditary disease.
To donate blood for total amylase is often prescribed for a comprehensive examination of diseases of the ovaries, salivary glands, bronchi.
You should not panic with a slight deviation of these indicators from the norm. If the state of health is good, there are no additional symptoms of diseases, then, most likely, there are no pathologies. Danger is the excess of amylase by 2-3 times compared with the norm. In this case, the presence of problems is obvious, and further examination is necessary.
The following factors can affect the result of a blood test (to a small extent):
- taking certain drugs: hormonal contraceptives, analgesics, Ibuprofen, Furosemide, Captopril (increase the content of the enzyme);
- chronic renal failure (increases the concentration and activity of amylase);
- reduce its amount may be elevated cholesterol.
The main reasons for the increase
The most commonly prescribed analysis is not a common, but a pancreatic variety. If such alpha-amylase in the blood is increased, the causes are most often associated with two groups of diseases: inflammatory and metabolic (metabolic disorder).
The first group includes:
- pancreatitis (acute form). Often, inflammation of the pancreas is accompanied by a significant increase in amylase in the blood (2-3 times). If high enzyme levels are accompanied by symptoms such as severe pain in the upper abdomen, vomiting, dizziness, high fever, then most likely the cause is acute pancreatitis;
- pancreatitis in chronic form. To monitor the patient's condition, the analysis must be taken regularly. An increase in amylase is observed only at an early stage, then its content may decrease. This is due to the gradual death of cells that produce the enzyme;
- cholecystitis in acute form. Additional symptoms: acute pain in the right hypochondrium, abdominal distension. If the patient was previously diagnosed with biliary tract dyskinesia, and the analysis for amylase showed its increase, the likelihood of cholecystitis is very high;
- mechanical pancreatic injuries (as a result of abdominal strokes);
- acute appendicitis;
- pancreas cancer. The presence of a tumor is always accompanied by enhanced production of enzymes;
- inflammation of the abdominal cavity (peritonitis).
Exchange disorders that lead to high activity of pancreatic amylase:
- ketoacidosis is a complication of diabetes. Amylase breaks down carbohydrates, and an imbalance in blood sugar can cause its increased production by the pancreas;
- Macroamylasemia - a disease in which the enzyme in the serum binds to protein molecules, as a result of which it is not removed from the body and accumulates in the blood.
Thus, an increase in pancreatic amylase is most often caused by acute or chronic inflammation of the pancreas and adjacent organs.
Enzyme Reduction Methods
If the analyzes showed excess, then, first of all, it is necessary to identify the cause of such a deviation. Only after that it makes sense to prescribe medications and procedures.
General measures aimed at reducing amylase, are as follows.
- If its increase is associated with an acute inflammatory process, it is necessary to comply with bed rest, a decrease in physical and mental stress.
- It is necessary to establish sleep, increasing its duration to 8.5-10 hours at the time of illness.
- It should be more often in the fresh air. This leads to the normalization of metabolism, which has a beneficial effect on the content of enzymes, including pancreatic amylase.
- Normalization of nutrition is a very important aspect for reducing this enzyme. It is necessary to exclude alcohol, coffee and strong tea, chocolate, as well as spicy, fatty foods and canned food. You should distribute your daily diet for several meals (at least five). It is important to avoid overeating and hunger.
High rates of pancreatic amylase are a sign that it’s time to take care of your health. At the first stage, it is necessary to consult a doctor, conduct the necessary examinations, and then follow the developed treatment plan. Independent measures to reduce amylase in the blood are reduced only to the normalization of diet, rest and activity. Take care of your health!