How to interpret Liver function test in your labs?

What is Liver function test?


Liver is the largest organ in your body with various important functions to keep you healthy. It is located in the right upper abdomen below the rib cage. It removes toxins, stores vitamins & minerals, regulates blood clotting, provides protection from infection, metabolizes medicines and plays important role in glucose, protein & fat metabolism.


Liver function test is a part of the standard comprehensive metabolic panel and can be ordered separately as well.


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Liver function test commonly includes following tests:


  • AST (SGOT)

  • ALT (SGPT)

  • Total Bilirubin

  • Alkaline Phosphatase

  • Total protein

  • Albumin


Normal Liver function test range: (May vary among various labs)


  • AST (SGOT) – 5-34 U/L

  • ALT (SGPT) – 5-55 U/L

  • Total Bilirubin – 0.1-1.2 MG/DL

  • Alkaline Phosphatase – 40-150 U/L

  • Total protein – 6.4-8.3 GM/DL

  • Albumin – 3.5-5.0 GM/DL


What are the common causes of abnormal Liver function test?


  • Excessive Alcohol use

  • Certain medications and herbal supplements

  • Hepatitis A, B or C

  • Autoimmune Hepatitis where antibodies attack the liver

  • Inflammation from too much of fat deposition in Liver (Fatty liver or Steatohepatitis)

  • Genetic diseases like Wilson disease or Hemochromatosis

  • Heart failure causing congestive hepatopathy due to too much of fluid in the Liver

  • Liver Cancer

  • Muscle injury

  • Heart attack or injury to heart muscles

  • Thyroid disease

  • Gall stones and Gall Bladder diseases

  • Conditions affecting Bile system that drains bile into the intestines

  • Certain bone conditions


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