Worried about my liver: I recently had a... - British Liver Trust

British Liver Trust

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Worried about my liver


I recently had a blood test which showed I have an ALT level of 137. I went to A&E with chest pains which turned out to be nothing but when they tested my blood, they noticed this level was high. I don't really know what this means, if it's serious or not.

I do have an appointment with my GP for this Friday to discuss it though, but I am worried as I've been obese for years and am worried I've damaged my liver irreparably. I've never been a big drinker and stopped completely 8 years ago, but my weight has always been a problem.

Over the last few weeks I've started to get short of breath as well, despite not doing any more or less exercise than usual. Does anyone know what this ALT level means? I don't have any other numbers than that.

4 Replies


One abnormal result does not prove or disprove anything - when you see your GP on Friday ask him/her to go through the results with you and explain what they might mean. It may be that they want to do further blood tests and/or a scan just to try and understand a bit further what ,if anything, is going on.

The free helpline is available as well if you want to talk to someone about it:

0800 652 7330



It most likely means that you have fatty liver plus nonalcoholic steatohepatitis or NASH. The raised ALT means that your liver is inflamed (hepatitis) and probably has been inflamed without you knowing it for some time (perhaps years). An ALT of 137 means it's significantly inflamed and you are going to have to do everything you can to help your liver.

I believe that I've had NASH for at least a year but my ALT has only been very mildly raised and my liver appears to have come good recently. I can sense it from the way I'm feeling and I'm expecting that a blood test in a few days will confirm it. I haven't had a drink for almost 3 years (I was never a heavy drinker) or a painkiller for just over a year. Long term use of painkillers caused my liver to become inflamed. I exercise on a treadmill for up to an hour daily & my body mass index is at the top of the normal range and I'm working towards getting it down nearer the bottom of the normal range. Just living clean of alcohol and painkillers and exercising regularly have been enough in my case.

If I'm right and you have fatty liver and NASH based on what you've revealed it's going to be a lot harder for you to fix the problem. An ultrasound scan & a FibroScan would be a good idea to determine how much if any fibrosis your liver has. Exercise and weight loss plus avoiding anything that stresses the liver like alcohol and medication other than that prescribed by a doctor would be a good start but whether that would be enough to stop the inflammation is debatable if you are significantly overweight. If you have metabolic syndrome it makes it a lot harder and if you have type 2 diabetes harder still.

bambleweeny57 in reply to Hidden

Thanks for the reply. I don't have type 2 as far as I know, I've had various blood sugar tests over the years and it's never been anything other than normal. The only medication I take is Omeprazol and also Bisoprolol which was to combat the attacks of palpitations I get from time to time. I've been on these for around 5 years now. If I take any painkillers, it's usually paracetamol but no more than once a month on average.

I also found out recently that my sister has NAFLD. Apparently she carries a gene for it which was revealed in a special test she had?

I guess I'll have to see what the GP says and what any further tests reveal.

Hidden in reply to bambleweeny57

The two medications that you take could explain why your ALT is raised. They are both strong medications with many possible side effects.

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