High Heart Enzymes

by Arlene

Hear enzymes are biochemical catalysts that are regarded as markers and in fact referred to commonly as cardiac markers. They are referred to as markers for good reason - they are a good measure of heart damage. Enzymes are proteins, essential to the body's structure and function and necessary for regulating the various chemical reactions that take place. Heart enzymes are preset in heart tissue and work like catalysts, regulating and stimulating various cardiac biochemical reactions. High heart enzymes can be indicative of a number of things, but mostly signal some extent of heart damage.

To illustrate the significance of high levels of heart enzymes we could take the example of arterial blockage or a heart attack or any type of heart injury for that matter. These conditions cause damage to the heart and its muscles. In the case of a heart attack brought on by arterial blockage, the supply of oxygenate blood to the heart is obstructed, causing damage to the heart and cardiac muscles. Deprivation of oxygen to the heart and resultant muscle damage as in case of a heart attack would cause high heart enzyme levels to be released in to the blood stream.

Cardiac enzymes have a function that is restricted to the operation or functioning of the heart, which is why under normal circumstances the levels of heart enzymes present in the blood would be low. Any kind of damage to heart muscles however, whether from cardiac arrest or from heart surgery, would however cause an elevation of these heart enzyme levels in the blood stream as they escape out of the damaged heart muscle cells. High enzyme levels are therefore a good indicator of heart damage and doctors commonly recommend testing for heart enzyme levels if you've experienced symptoms suggestive of a heart condition or if you have undergone certain medical procedures.

Measuring heart enzyme levels in response to symptoms of cardiac disease can help to determine if you're experiencing a heart attack. Testing following cardiac surgery or any treatment for cardiac problems is also useful during the recovery phase as it enables doctors to ascertain and measure the success or a medical procedure or drugs that are being used to dissolve a blockage. It should be pointed out though that the results are not necessarily clear cut as cardiac enzymes do not instantly appear elevated in the blood stream but they enter gradually following damage or a heart attack. High heart enzymes may only be identified around six hour or more after the onset of the condition.

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