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Old 10-02-2011, 10:28 AM   #1
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michaelws65 HB User
Concerned about ALT of 58

I'm look for advice and encouragement. For the last few years I have diarrhea off and on. Occasioncally constipation. I thought it was do to too much acidic food a drinks so I cut back on carbonated drinks added more fiber to my diet. Last month I got what I thought was the stomach flu but it lasted 10 days and I didn't feel much better when the diarrhea stopped. I have been bitten by several ticks this year working in the yard and my wife got Lyme's disease so I was tested but it came back negative. My standard blood work showed an ALT of 58. Everything else was normal. My doctor asked me to take the ALT test again but I haven't gotten the result yet.
I am very concerned about the elevated number and I have some discomfort in my lower right abdomen. I have had some dull pain in my left shoulder and some pain in my left hand. The pain doesn't feel muscular. I also have pain in my joints that comes to goes and I get tired about every other day. I sometimes get pain in my right hand and in my feet. I used to drink about 3 six packs of beer a month but cut back to 1 six pack a month a year ago and I gave up beer expect during football season. I think I have had 10 beers all year.

I'm 46, 6'1" and 190lbs. My father is not overweight but has diabetes and had to start insulin this year.

Am I going to be OK?

 
Old 10-03-2011, 12:25 PM   #2
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Robert32asp HB User
Re: Concerned about ALT of 58

Quote:
Originally Posted by michaelws65 View Post
I'm look for advice and encouragement.

...My standard blood work showed an ALT of 58. Everything else was normal. My doctor asked me to take the ALT test again but I haven't gotten the result yet.

...I am very concerned about the elevated number and I have some discomfort in my lower right abdomen. I have had some dull pain in my left shoulder and some pain in my left hand. The pain doesn't feel muscular. I also have pain in my joints that comes to goes and I get tired about every other day. I sometimes get pain in my right hand and in my feet. I used to drink about 3 six packs of beer a month but cut back to 1 six pack a month a year ago and I gave up beer expect during football season. I think I have had 10 beers all year.

..Am I going to be OK?
Based on everything you are saying, I would say that your ALT isn't your most pressing problem.

Seriously, if you have non-muscular pains that you described, they could be anything from indegestion to early symptoms of a heart attack.

Calm down. An ALT of 58 and that being the only blood work negative should not cause a health panic. I have had higher ALT values and other liver enzymes that were also out of range at the same time, and over the course of a few months they all returned to "normal."

Take you medical panic and do something positive with it. You say that your dad got diabetes. Well it is genetic and probably should be a bigger fear than an ALT of 58. Start taking some steps to eat healthier, get exercise and de-stress your life. Get your blood glucose level tested periodically and keep it in the correct range.

Seriously, I would start exercising, eat better, get more rest, continue to abstain from alcohol, and then take the test again in a couple months. If it isn't lower, then redouble your efforts and take it again in a few months and it will probably be fine or at least then you will have a reason to talk to your doctor. Most of what I have read is that liver enzymes (especially in it is just one) that are less than 2 to 3 times the normal lab max value are considered to be "mildly elevated." Your ALT reading of 58 is mildly elevated, and very close to the normal range, which should provide you with some comfort.

For me elevated AST and ALT levels were probably more to do with exercise induced muscle damage being picked up in the blood test and by having a drink the night before my first test. There could be all kinds of explanations for you just every so slightly elevated ALT. Good luck.

Last edited by Robert32asp; 10-03-2011 at 12:27 PM.

 
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Old 10-03-2011, 12:53 PM   #3
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michaelws65 HB User
Re: Concerned about ALT of 58

Thank you for the reply and honest advice. This has been a wake up call for me even though my ALT level returned to normal yesterday. I plan to take better care of myself and my doctor plan wants to monitor the level. He also wants me to take a few more tests to rule out a few things but no matter what I will start running again. I used to run 90 miles a month but quit 10 years ago to build a house and start our family. I'm also giving up beer except for a few times a year. I will ask about getting tested for diabetes but my doctor feels my heart is fine. Thanks again for the encouragement.

 
Old 10-03-2011, 01:00 PM   #4
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Robert32asp HB User
Re: Concerned about ALT of 58

Quote:
Originally Posted by michaelws65 View Post
...I will start running again. I used to run 90 miles a month but quit 10 years ago.....
Remember not to do any "heavy exercise" in the 8 days prior to the next liver enzyme test your doctor has you take, as it can distort the results.

 
Old 10-03-2011, 06:30 PM   #5
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michaelws65 HB User
Re: Concerned about ALT of 58

I won't be running 90 miles a month with two kids but I will remember not to do any heavy exercise 8 days before the next test. thanks.

 
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