Lactate: biomarker and potential therapeutic target

Crit Care Clin. 2011 Apr;27(2):299-326. doi: 10.1016/j.ccc.2010.12.013.


Lactate levels are frequently elevated in critically ill patients and correlate well with disease severity. Elevated lactate levels are prognostic in prehospital, emergency department, and intensive care unit settings. This review discusses the role of lactate as a biomarker in diagnosing and assessing the severity of systemic hypoperfusion, as well as the role of serum lactate measurements in guiding clinical care and enabling prognosis in critically ill patients.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers / blood
  • Critical Care*
  • Critical Illness / therapy
  • Hemodynamics
  • Humans
  • Lactic Acid / blood*
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Prognosis


  • Biomarkers
  • Lactic Acid