Creatine Kinase, Total (CK)

CPT: 82550

Expected Turnaround Time

24 Hours

Turnaround time is defined as the usual number of days from the date of pickup of a specimen for testing to when the result is released to the ordering provider. In some cases, additional time should be allowed for additional confirmatory or additional reflex tests. Testing schedules may vary.

Specimen Requirements


Serum, Plasma


SST (Serum), Red Top (Separate Serum), Lithium Heparin (Plasma)

Storage Instructions

Room Temp., Refrigerated (2-8 C)

Stability Requirements

Room temp. 72hrs, Refrigerated 7 days

Test Details

Additional Information

Creatine kinase (CK) is an enzyme that’s found in the skeletal muscle, heart muscle and brain. When any of these tissues are damaged, they leak creatine kinase into the blood. Elevated CK levels may indicate muscle injury or disease. 

Creatine kinase (CK) is an enzyme that mainly exists in the heart and skeletal muscle, with small amounts in the brain. The cells in the skeletal muscles, heart muscles or brain release creatine kinase into the blood when they’re damaged.

An enzyme is a protein that acts as a catalyst to bring about a specific biochemical reaction.

The small amount of CK that’s normally in the blood mainly comes from the skeletal muscles (the muscles that are attached to the bones and tendons). Any condition, injury or event that causes muscle damage and/or interferes with muscle energy production or use increases levels of CK in the blood. For example, intense exercise can increase CK levels. Muscle diseases (myopathies) such as muscular dystrophy can also increase CK levels.

There are three types of CK enzymes:

  • CK-MM: Found mostly in the skeletal muscles. 
  • CK-MB: Found mostly in the heart muscle. 
  • CK-BB: Found mostly in brain tissue.

A creatine kinase (CK) test measures the amount of creatine kinase in the blood. 

Elevated CK levels may indicate skeletal muscle, heart or brain damage or degeneration — either chronic (long-term) or acute (short-term).

The regular function of creatine kinase (CK) is not really related to what elevated levels of it may indicate in a blood test. CK’s job is to add a phosphate group, a group of natural chemicals, to creatine, a substance in the muscle cells that helps the muscles produce energy. When CK adds phosphates to creatine, it turns the creatine into the high-energy molecule, phosphocreatine, which the body uses to generate energy. 


  1. MedlinePlus. Creatine Kinase ( Accessed 4/11/2022. 
  2. Muscular Dystrophy Association. Simply Stated: The Creatine Kinase Test ( Accessed 4/11/2022.  

Statement on Medical Necessity
All ordered tests should be medically necessary for the diagnosis or detection of disease, illness, impairment, symptom, syndrome, or disorder and the results should be used in the medical management and treatment decisions for the patient. Solaris requires ICD-10 codes with each order for lab testing and both the tests ordered and the diagnosis should be documented in the provider’s medical record for the patient. The United States Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General, takes the position that a provider who orders medically unnecessary tests may be subject to civil penalties.

Panels and Profiles
Solaris offers Providers the convenience of ordering test combinations in a group at times with the flexibility to choose appropriate test(s) for individual patients. Providers should only order those tests that he or she believes are medically necessary for each patient, and a lesser inclusive profile or individual tests should be ordered if not all tests in the test combination/profile are medically necessary. All tests offered in a test combination/profile may be ordered separately as individual tests. Solaris encourages clients to contact their Solaris representative if the testing configurations shown do not meet individual needs for any reason, or if some other combination of procedures is needed.

CPT Codes
CPT Codes listed are in accordance with Current Procedural Terminology, a publication of the American Medical Association. CPT codes are the responsibility of the billing party and are listed here for informational purposes. Correct coding may vary from one carrier to another. Solaris may bill specific carriers using codes other than what is shown.


For questions or inquiries related to testing please reach out to or contact us by phone at (844) 550-0308.