What is Creatine phosphokinase (CPK)?


Creatine phosphokinase (CPK) is an enzyme in the body. It is found mainly in the heart, brain, and skeletal muscle. The main task for CPK is to convert creatine into phosphate. When muscle damage or stress occurs the levels of CPK increase, because muscle injury causes the muscle cells to open. As large amounts of CPK is present in the muscle cells, their splitting open results in spilling of CPK into the blood, and hence raising the levels of CPK present in the blood.

Purpose to test CPK

A CPK isoenzymes test is usually done in the emergency room if you have the symptoms of a heart attack.

This test may be used to:

  • Diagnose heart attack
  • Evaluate cause of chest pain
  • Determine if or how badly a muscle is damaged
  • Detect dermatomyositis, polymyositis, and other muscle diseases
  • Tell the difference between malignant hyperthermia and postoperative infection

What is the normal range for CPK?

35 – 232 IU/L

CPK optimal range high low

For more information on CPK, please visit


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