Amylase - urine
This is a test that measures the amount of amylase in urine. Amylase is an enzyme that helps digest carbohydrates. It is produced mainly in the pancreas and the glands that make saliva.
Amylase may also be measured with a blood test.
How the Test is Performed
A urine sample is needed. The test may be performed using:
How to Prepare for the Test
Many medicines can interfere with test results.
- Your health care provider will tell you if you need to stop taking any medicines before you have this test.
- DO NOT stop or change your medicines without talking to your provider first.
How the Test will Feel
The test involves only normal urination. There is no discomfort.
Why the Test is Performed
This test is done to diagnose pancreatitis and other diseases that affect the pancreas.
The normal range is 2.6 to 21.2 international units per hour (IU/h).
Normal value ranges may vary slightly among different laboratories. Talk to your provider about the meaning of your specific test results.
The example above shows the common measurement range for results for these tests. Some laboratories use different measurements or may test different specimens.
What Abnormal Results Mean
An increased amount of amylase in the urine is called amylasuria. Increased urine amylase levels may be a sign of:
- Acute pancreatitis
- Alcohol consumption
- Cancer of the pancreas, ovaries, or lungs
- Ectopic or ruptured tubal pregnancy
- Gallbladder disease
- Infection of the salivary glands (called sialoadenitis, may be caused by bacteria, mumps or a blockage)
- Intestinal obstruction
- Pancreatic duct obstruction
- Pelvic inflammatory disease
- Perforated ulcer
Decreased amylase levels may be due to:
- Damage to the pancreas
- Kidney disease
Forsmark CE. Pancreatitis. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman-Cecil Medicine. 25th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2016:chap 144.
Siddiqi HA, Salwen MJ, Shaikh MH, Bowne WB. Laboratory diagnosis of gastrointestinal and pancreatic disorders. In: McPherson RA, Pincus MR, eds. Henry's Clinical Diagnosis and Management by Laboratory Methods. 23rd ed. St Louis, MO: Elsevier; 2017:chap 22.
Reviewed By: David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.