why is my liver function test high
What are the possible causes of a raised liver function on a? What does it mean when your blood test shows that your immune system is attacking itself? Although it is only 30 words long, this is a very complex question that could fill a book! So I will briefly address these two issues and hope it will help. There are a number of liver function tests, so without knowing which one or ones are abnormal I can only hazard a guess at a diagnosis. So I will just tell you what they mean in general. The liver is a sort of chemical factory that makes some things that are essential to use in the body and it also breaks down and gets rid of some of the unwanted products of your body's chemical processes. Some liver function tests, like the gamma GT (gamma-glytamyl transpeptidase), are very sensitive and can be raised by something as simple as taking paracetamol regularly and perhaps a bit too often, or as complicated as showing damage caused by too much alcohol. Other liver function tests can be abnormal if certain drugs are making the chemical factory work too hard, or if the liver is being damaged by drugs. Or it could mean that the liver is affected by an infection, like a viral
or damaged by some other disease process. So you see, it could mean very little or be more serious, and I am afraid without knowing why your liver is being investigated, I cannot say much more.
However it is worth mentioning that the liver is an organ that has great powers of recovery, so even if it has been damaged, it can often recover very well. Your second question embraces all of the auto-immune diseases, of which there are many. What happens is that something triggers off an abnormal reaction in the body so that it does not recognise it as self'. I expect you know that if some strange material enters the body, your immune system will produce antibodies to the intruder to try and damage it or kill it off. This happens when invade the body, and perhaps the most extreme example is where an organ like a heart or a kidney is transplanted. The immune system of the person receiving the organ will not recognise it and will produce antibodies against it. This is the process of rejection of the donated organ. Powerful drugs can suppress the rejection process, which is why so many transplants are now successful. However, if something goes wrong with this mechanism, then your immune system will attack your own body cells. Let's take a simple example. Supposing something goes wrong with your immune system and it does not recognise your thyroid gland. It will produce antibodies to thyroid tissue and the thyroid will stop making its hormone, thyroxine. This example can be easily be put right, as you can simply take extra thyroid hormone.
However problems like this are not always so easy to solve, and sometimes drugs rather like those used to stop rejection of a transplant will be needed. Many organs of the body can be affected in this way, including the immune system itself, and the diagnosis usually can be made with a blood test, and sometimes a sample of tissue ( ). I hope this explanation goes some way to helping you understand this concept. Last updated 27. 08. 2014 What Is a Blood Test? A is when a sample of is taken from the body to be tested in a lab. Doctors order blood tests to check things such as the levels of, hemoglobin, or white blood cells. This can help them detect problems like a disease or medical condition. Sometimes, blood tests can help them see how well an organ (such as the liver or ) is working. What Is a Hepatic (Liver) Function Panel? A liver function panel is a blood test that helps doctors check for liver injury, infection, or disease. Liver function panels also can check for side effects in the liver from some medicines. Why Are Liver Function Panels Done? Albumin and total protein, which help build and maintain muscles, bones, blood, and organ tissue. Low levels may be seen with liver disease or, or nutritional problems. Liver enzymes: Alkaline phosphatase (ALP), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), and aspartate aminotransferase (AST).
These enzymes help the liver turn food into energy. When their levels are high, it can be a sign of that the liver is injured or irritated. Bilirubin. Bilirubin is made when red blood cells break down. The liver changes the bilirubin so that it can be excreted from the body. High bilirubin levels may mean there is a problem with the liver. This can make skin look yellow, a condition called jaundice. How Should I Prepare for a Liver Function Panel? You may be asked to stop eating and drinking for 8 to 12 hours before the test. Tell your doctor about any medicines you take because some drugs might affect the test results. It can help to wear a T shirt or other short-sleeve top on the day of the test to make things faster and easier for the technician who will be drawing the blood. How Is a Liver Function Panel Done? Most blood tests take a small amount of blood from a vein. To do that, a health professional will: It's best to try to relax and stay still during the procedure because tensing muscles can make it harder and more painful to draw blood. And if you don't want to watch the needle being inserted or see the blood collecting, you don't have to. Look the other way and maybe relax by focusing on saying the alphabet backward, doing some breathing exercises, thinking of a place that makes you happy, or listening to your favorite music.
How Long Does a Liver Function Panel Take? Most blood tests take just a few minutes. Occasionally, it can be hard to find a vein, so the health professional may need to try more than once. What Happens After a Liver Function Panel? The health professional will remove the elastic band and the needle and cover the area with cotton or a bandage to stop the bleeding. Afterward, there may be some mild bruising, which should go away in a few days. When Are Liver Function Panel Results Ready? Blood samples are processed by a machine, and it may take a few hours to a day for the results to be available. If the test results show signs of a problem, the doctor might order other tests to figure out what the problem is and how to treat it. Are There Any Risks From Liver Function Panels? A liver function panel is a safe procedure with minimal risks. Some people might feel faint or lightheaded from the test. A few teens have a strong fear of. If you're anxious, talk with the doctor before the test about ways to make the procedure easier. A small bruise or mild soreness around the blood test site is common and can last for a few days. Get medical care if the discomfort gets worse or lasts longer. If you have questions about the liver function panel, speak with your doctor or the health professional doing the blood draw.
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