Liver function tests, sometimes called liver enzymes or liver tests, or transaminases are a collection of usually 5 biochemical tests that are used as a screen to see if there is any evidence of liver trouble such as a damaged or inflamed liver, or used to monitor an existing abnormality.
The reasons your doctor measured your liver function might be one of the following reasons:
- This may be as part of a general health screen
- To help diagnose liver disorders if you have suggestive symptoms (such as jaundice). The pattern of the blood results may help to say which disorder is causing the problem. For example, depending on which enzyme is highest it may point to a particular disorder.
- To monitor the activity and severity of liver disorders.
- As a routine precaution after starting certain medicines such as a statin to check that they are not causing liver damage as a side-effect.
- You might have a condition, such as diabetes, where fat in the liver can cause abnormal liver results
- Your doctor may also be concerned with regards to your lifestyle, such as your alcohol intake or another condition you suffer from, such as colitis, may predispose you to liver disease.