Test Catalog

Test Id : AMS

Amylase, Total, Serum

Useful For
Suggests clinical disorders or settings where the test may be helpful

Diagnosis and management of pancreatitis


Evaluation of pancreatic function

Method Name
A short description of the method used to perform the test

Colorimetric Rate Reaction

NY State Available
Indicates the status of NY State approval and if the test is orderable for NY State clients.


Reporting Name
Lists a shorter or abbreviated version of the Published Name for a test

Amylase, Total, S

Specimen Type
Describes the specimen type validated for testing


Necessary Information

Patient's age and sex are required.

Specimen Required
Defines the optimal specimen required to perform the test and the preferred volume to complete testing


Preferred: Serum gel

Acceptable: Red top

Specimen Volume: 0.5 mL

Collection Instructions:

1. Serum gel tubes should be centrifuged within 2 hours of collection.

2. Red-top tubes should be centrifuged and the serum aliquoted into a plastic vial within 2 hours of collection.

Specimen Minimum Volume
Defines the amount of sample necessary to provide a clinically relevant result as determined by the Testing Laboratory

0.25 mL

Reject Due To
Identifies specimen types and conditions that may cause the specimen to be rejected

Gross hemolysis Reject
Gross lipemia OK

Specimen Stability Information
Provides a description of the temperatures required to transport a specimen to the performing laboratory, alternate acceptable temperatures are also included

Specimen Type Temperature Time Special Container
Serum Frozen (preferred) 30 days
Refrigerated 30 days
Ambient 7 days

Useful For
Suggests clinical disorders or settings where the test may be helpful

Diagnosis and management of pancreatitis


Evaluation of pancreatic function

Clinical Information
Discusses physiology, pathophysiology, and general clinical aspects, as they relate to a laboratory test

The amylase enzymes are a group of hydrolases that degrade complex carbohydrates into fragments. Amylase is produced primarily by the exocrine pancreas where the enzyme is synthesized by the acinar cells and then secreted into the intestinal tract by way of the pancreatic duct system. Amylases also are produced by the salivary glands, small intestine mucosa, ovaries, placenta, liver, and fallopian tubes. Pancreatic and salivary isoenzymes are found in serum.

Reference Values
Describes reference intervals and additional information for interpretation of test results. May include intervals based on age and sex when appropriate. Intervals are Mayo-derived, unless otherwise designated. If an interpretive report is provided, the reference value field will state this.

0-30 days: 0-6 U/L

31-182 days: 1-17 U/L

183-365 days: 6-44 U/L

1-3 years: 8-79 U/L

4-17 years: 21-110 U/L

> or =18 years: 28-100 U/L

Provides information to assist in interpretation of the test results

In acute pancreatitis, a transient rise in serum amylase activity occurs within 2 to 12 hours of onset; levels return to normal by the third or fourth day. A 4- to 6-fold elevation of amylase activity above the reference limit is usual with the maximal levels obtained in 12 to 72 hours. However, a significant number of subjects show lesser elevations and sometimes none. The magnitude of the elevation of serum enzyme activity is not related to the severity of pancreatic involvement. Normalization is not necessarily a sign of resolution.


In acute pancreatitis associated with hyperlipidemia, serum amylase activity may be spuriously normal; the amylasemia may be unmasked either by serial dilution of the serum or ultracentrifugation.


A significant amount of serum amylase is excreted in the urine and, therefore, elevation of serum activity is reflected in the rise of urinary amylase activity. Urine amylase, as compared to serum amylase, appears to be more frequently elevated, reaches higher levels, and persists for longer periods. However, the receiver operator curves (ROC) of various serum and urine amylase assays demonstrated that all urine assays had poorer diagnostic utility than all serum assays. In quiescent chronic pancreatitis, both serum and urine activities are usually subnormal.


Because it is produced by several organs, amylase is not a specific indicator of pancreatic function. Elevated levels also may be seen in a number of nonpancreatic disease processes including mumps, salivary duct obstruction, ectopic pregnancy, and intestinal obstruction/infarction.

Discusses conditions that may cause diagnostic confusion, including improper specimen collection and handling, inappropriate test selection, and interfering substances

Amylase results may be elevated in patients with macroamylase. Macroamylase refers to a high-molecular weight form of amylase that is present in a patient's serum. Different causes of macroamylase have been suggested, the most common being amylase complexed with an immunoglobulin. The large size of the macroamylase complex prevents its excretion in the urine. As a result, the serum amylase is usually elevated. This elevated amylase is not diagnostic for pancreatitis. By utilizing serum lipase and urinary amylase, the presence or absence of macroamylase may be determined.

Clinical Reference
Recommendations for in-depth reading of a clinical nature

1. Soldin SJ: Pediatric Reference Ranges. 2nd ed AACC Press; 1997

2. Rifai N, Horvath AR, Wittwer CT, eds: Tietz Textbook of Clinical Chemistry and Molecular Diagnostics. 6th ed. Elsevier; 2018

3. Swaroop VS, Chari ST, Clain JE: Acute pancreatitis. JAMA. 2004;291:2865-2868

4. Azzopardi E, Lloyd C, Teixeira SR, Conlan, RS, Whitaker, IS: Clinical applications of amylase: Novel perspectives. Surgery. 2016;160(1):26-37

Method Description
Describes how the test is performed and provides a method-specific reference

The liquid Roche amylase method is an enzymatic colorimetric test using 4,6-ethylidene-(G7) p-nitrophenyl-(G1)-alpha-D-maltoheptaoside (ethylidene-G7PNP); cleaved under the catalytic action of alpha-amylases. The G2PNP, G3PNP, and G4PNP fragments so formed are completely hydrolyzed to p-nitrophenol and glucose by alpha-glucosidase. The color intensity of the p-nitrophenol formed is directly proportional to the alpha-amylase activity. It is determined by measuring the increase in absorbance.(Package insert: Roche AMYL2 reagent. Roche Diagnostics; 12/2018)

PDF Report
Indicates whether the report includes an additional document with charts, images or other enriched information


Day(s) Performed
Outlines the days the test is performed. This field reflects the day that the sample must be in the testing laboratory to begin the testing process and includes any specimen preparation and processing time before the test is performed. Some tests are listed as continuously performed, which means that assays are performed multiple times during the day.

Monday through Sunday

Report Available
The interval of time (receipt of sample at Mayo Clinic Laboratories to results available) taking into account standard setup days and weekends. The first day is the time that it typically takes for a result to be available. The last day is the time it might take, accounting for any necessary repeated testing.

Same day/1 to 2 days

Specimen Retention Time
Outlines the length of time after testing that a specimen is kept in the laboratory before it is discarded

1 week

Performing Laboratory Location
Indicates the location of the laboratory that performs the test


Several factors determine the fee charged to perform a test. Contact your U.S. or International Regional Manager for information about establishing a fee schedule or to learn more about resources to optimize test selection.

  • Authorized users can sign in to Test Prices for detailed fee information.
  • Clients without access to Test Prices can contact Customer Service 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
  • Prospective clients should contact their account representative. For assistance, contact Customer Service.

Test Classification
Provides information regarding the medical device classification for laboratory test kits and reagents. Tests may be classified as cleared or approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and used per manufacturer instructions, or as products that do not undergo full FDA review and approval, and are then labeled as an Analyte Specific Reagent (ASR) product.

This test has been cleared, approved, or is exempt by the US Food and Drug Administration and is used per manufacturer's instructions. Performance characteristics were verified by Mayo Clinic in a manner consistent with CLIA requirements.

CPT Code Information
Provides guidance in determining the appropriate Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) code(s) information for each test or profile. The listed CPT codes reflect Mayo Clinic Laboratories interpretation of CPT coding requirements. It is the responsibility of each laboratory to determine correct CPT codes to use for billing.

CPT codes are provided by the performing laboratory.


LOINC® Information
Provides guidance in determining the Logical Observation Identifiers Names and Codes (LOINC) values for the order and results codes of this test. LOINC values are provided by the performing laboratory.

Test Id Test Order Name Order LOINC Value
AMS Amylase, Total, S 1798-8
Result Id Test Result Name Result LOINC Value
Applies only to results expressed in units of measure originally reported by the performing laboratory. These values do not apply to results that are converted to other units of measure.
AMS Amylase, Total, S 1798-8

Test Setup Resources

Setup Files
Test setup information contains test file definition details to support order and result interfacing between Mayo Clinic Laboratories and your Laboratory Information System.

Excel | Pdf

Sample Reports
Normal and Abnormal sample reports are provided as references for report appearance.

Normal Reports | Abnormal Reports

SI Sample Reports
International System (SI) of Unit reports are provided for a limited number of tests. These reports are intended for international account use and are only available through MayoLINK accounts that have been defined to receive them.

SI Normal Reports | SI Abnormal Reports