Liver function tests normal values are figures indicating that the liver is working well. Liver problems can be easily detected when the results of the person’s liver function tests are found outside the normal values. Abnormal test results alert health professionals as they are a strong indication that the individual is suffering from some kind of medical condition that cause damage to the liver.
Physicians are making good use of liver function tests normal values in the early diagnosis of liver problems. The prognosis of a patient whose liver problem has been detected and treated early on is high, preventing complications and the development of irreversible medical problems.
Role of liver in the human body
The liver plays a vital role in the human body as it is responsible in controlling the level of glucose in the blood by discharging the stored glucose into the bloodstream. The liver also turns toxic chemicals into harmless substances with the aid of liver enzymes. In addition, it also helps in the digestion of fats by releasing bile salts into the intestines. The liver function tests normal values will not be achieved when something is seriously wrong with the liver.
What is a liver function test?
Liver function tests normal values show the parameters monitored for the different liver enzymes. These can only be determined when a liver function test is done. The evaluation is made up of a series of tests to determine the level of proteins or enzymes in the blood. It should be noted that some of the screening included in the liver function test do not actually gauge liver function but measure how the liver is working in producing proteins and eliminating waste products in the blood. In addition, some tests gauge the number of enzymes released by the liver in response to a disease or injury.
What are the different tests included in the liver function tests?
Since the liver function test is made up of several procedures, each test also has its own liver function test normal values. The tests included in the liver function test are:
- Total Bilirubin (TBIL)
Bilirubin is the product of broken RBCs (red blood cells) which is brought to the liver and released in the stool. Too much bilirubin results in jaundice indicating liver disease.
- Alkaline Phosphatase (ALP)
An enzyme present in bide ducts, some tissues and liver.
- Aspartate Aminotransferase (AST)
This is a type of protein which is primarily found in the liver which is excreted into the bloodstream whenever there is damage on the tissue of the liver.
- Alanine Aminotransferase (ALT)
This type of protein is excreted into the bloodstream whenever damage to the liver tissue is noted.
- Albumin (ALB)
This is a type of protein made by the liver which helps in maintaining the osmotic pressure within the vascular space to prevent swelling.
Prothrombin Time test (PT), L-lacate Dehydrogenase test (LDH) and Gamma-glutamyltransferase test (GGT) may also be done to check the liver function.
Importance of liver function tests normal values
It is extremely important for liver function tests to be found within the normal range as this is a strong indication that the liver is doing its job properly. With the aid of the liver function tests normal values, the doctor can figure out whether there is an abnormality with the liver. He or she can also monitor how well the medications are working for the patient.
Normal values for liver function tests
Liver function tests normal values slightly differ between laboratories. This is the reason why it is best to have the doctor interpret the results.
- Total Bilirubin (TBIL) – 0.1 mg/dL – 1.0 mg/dL
- Alkaline Phosphatase (ALP) – 45 U/L – 115 U/L
- Aspartate Aminotransferase (AST) – 8 U/L – 48 U/L
- Alanine Aminotransferase (ALT) – 7 U/L – 55 U/L
- Albumin (ALB) 3.5 g/dL – 5.0 g/dL
- Prothrombin Time test (PT) – 8.3 seconds – 10.8 seconds
- L-lacate Dehydrogenase test (LDH) – 122 mcmol/L – 222 mcmol/L
- Gamma-glutamyltransferase test (GGT) – 9 U/L – 48 U/L
- Total Protein – 6.3 g/dL – 7.9 g/dL
Causes of abnormal liver function test results
Liver function test normal values are not achieved under the following conditions.
- Liver failure
- Fatty liver
- Viral hepatitis
Abnormal test result is achieved when the liver is damaged or inflamed which causes the enzymes and chemicals to leak from the liver. An abnormal result does not necessarily mean that a person already has a chronic liver problem but it could just be a temporary liver concern. Even so, this should still be confirmed by the doctor.
Liver function tests normal values are helpful diagnostic tools in the early detection and treatment of liver disease. Liver problems are difficult to rule out because they start with mild symptoms. It is recommended to visit the doctor immediately whenever a person experiences symptoms of abnormal liver functions as liver diseases are difficult to treat when they are already in their advanced stage.