There are many uses for lactate measurements in healthcare. Discover more about the increasingly important role of lactate in healthcare.
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Lactate is a normal by-product of energy use in the body and typical levels are approximately 2mM/mL. Elevated lactate levels are an indication of stress and require clinical investigation of the patient to determine why the lactate level is elevated.
During birth, a number of potential complications for mother and child may occur. These complications can lead to decreased oxygenation of the foetus and/or prolonged pain and injury to the mother. Monitoring mother and foetus closely for lactate levels provides diagnostics tools for a safe birth.
Umbilical cord blood lactate provides an indication of the acid–base balance of the infant at birth. It is recommended in all high‐risk deliveries and in some countries is performed routinely after all deliveries. Cord blood lactate (CBL) has a predictive value for perinatal outcome and elevated lactate levels alert clinicians to undertake immediate intervention.
Foetal scalp lactate (FSL) testing is a simple test, requiring a low volume of blood to monitor foetal distress during birth. Studies report significantly fewer failures in sampling with lactate analysis and no differences in short term neonatal outcome compared with high blood volume pH testing.
There are a number of causes for hyperlactatemia in critically ill patients with sepsis, shock and trauma being both the most common and most serious. Pre-admission measurements of lactate have been shown to improve the prediction of mortality, post-surgery infection and and multi-organ failure.
Regular endurance exercise has many benefits for health and well-being. It has been proven to lower systolic and diastolic blood pressure, improve insulin sensitivity and lower HbA1c levels, lower triglycerides and increase HDL-cholesterol. Regular power exercise, meanwhile, can increase insulin sensitivity. The maximal fat oxidation rate is reached under long-term aerobic conditions because this is when predominantly free fatty acids are used as the energy source. In contrast, under anaerobic conditions mainly carbohydrates are used for generating energy.
The measurement of lactate during step tests reveals the shift from aerobic (oxygen-dependent) to complementary anaerobic (non-oxygen dependent) metabolism. The knowledge of this ‘anaerobic threshold’ can be used for the definition of training intensities and conditions to achieve optimal fitness and weight reduction.
Furthermore, lactate testing can support a secure and efficient training avoiding critical over-exhaustion.
|Lactate is useful tool in treatment decision making|
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