Test Results & Interpretations
Overview of Alanine Transaminase
It is usually ordered when you have signs or symptoms of a liver disorder like loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, jaundice, itching, dark urine. It may also be ordered to monitor the treatment of patient’s with liver disease.
Why Get Tested
- As a part of liver function test
- If you have signs or symptoms of liver disease like dark colored urine, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, jaundice, abdominal pain
- If you are at increased risk of developing liver disease like you are a heavy drinker, have been exposed to hepatitis virus, or have a family history of liver disease
- No special preparation required
What Results of Alanine Transaminase mean?
- Very high ALT levels ( more than 10 times normal) are usually due to acute hepatitis which is usually due to a viral infection
- High ALT levels ( four times normal) may be seen in chronic hepatitis, obstruction of bile ducts or cirrhosis
- In most liver diseases, the ALT level is higher than AST and the AST/ALT ratio will be low (less than 1). The AST/ALT ratio is greater than 1 in alcoholic hepatitis, cirrhosis, heart or muscle injury
- ALT is more specific than AST for liver disease
Patient Concerns about Alanine Transaminase
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. What other conditions except liver disease can lead to raised ALT levels?
Injury to heart or skeletal muscle can lead to raised ALT level.
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