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    Old 06-17-2002, 10:24 AM   #1
    medsmomx2
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    Question high liver enzyimes and liver biopsy

    Hi,
    I am really hoping to get some help and some answers! My husband is 29 years old and he was on medicine for high blood pressure and high cholestral. He recently switched primary care doctors and his new doctor asked what the old doctor did about his liver enzyimes being high. My husband told the new dr. that the old dr. said "oh you're liver enzyimes are a little high, but not to worry", end of story. The new dr. was mad and ripped the pages from the old dr. out of his chart and said to hold on to it. Well, when you look at his lab work it shows that normal for the AST is 0-42 and his was 58 and for the ALT normal is 0-48 and his was 171! Now I ask you...are those a little high or a lot high? The new doctor took him off of all meds (his b.p. is perfect now), his cholestral is a little high, but dr said that alot of times when the liver enzyimes are high, that makes the cholestral high. So no meds, no tylenol, no alcohol for 2 weeks and then a retest. Does everything the dr. says, liver enzyimes are still high. Ok they re-test again a week later, still high. Now we are starting to get worried! He was really watching his diet, following dr. orders and they are still going up. This last test (which was about 1 1/2 week since the last test), his enzyimes went from,AST- 63 up to 114 and the ALT from 189 to 332! So now I am getting really worried! The docotor told him that he has a form of hepatitus, N.A.S.H. (non-alcohol s..... hepatitus). We just went to the drs. on friday and now he is scheduling a liver biopsy for my husband to find out what exactly is going on with his liver. The dr. did say that my husband does have a fatty liver. Another name for NASH was diabetic hepatitus, which diabetes does run in his family (father and uncle both have it). My husband is not a big drinker, he has been watching what he eats, and the dr. also told him that his liver is swollen and that could be the reason he has put on weight. Has anyone had this same problem or something similar? Sorry to make this post so long, but I really am looking for some help as to what to expect with all of this. Thanks so much for any help!!

    Denise
    SAHM to 2 beautiful little girls!

     
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    Old 06-17-2002, 05:48 PM   #2
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    HI-
    I forgot to add that my husband had gone for an ultrasound of his pelvis in May. So he has had some other tests done before the dr. scheduled the biopsy.

    Denise
    SAHM to 2 beautiful girls

     
    Old 06-21-2002, 11:26 PM   #3
    ralve
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    Hi, I am going through the high liver enzyme thing also. My story is that they found the high liver enzymes when I went to the hospital with chest pains, and since then I have had hepatitis tests done, and the first hepatitis test came out positive for hepatitis c, but then I went to a specialist (GI) and he took two other sets of tests, checking for HepC, and those came out negative. He seems to think now that I don not have HepC, but a fatty liver. There's some good info out there on this subject. Is your husband overweight? I am now, I never used to be, but started gaining weight when I had the kids, and now I've been overweight for about 7 years or so. Anyway, I have been trying to loose weight, but the way I understand it, if you have a dysfunctional liver, which is true of a fatty liver, then it's really hard to loose weight. I got on a website from Sandra Cabot M.D., and ordered her book and liver cleansing diet, but I have yet to use it, cause I want to ask my GI first if it's safe. I don't like taking anything, even herbs, if I don't totally check it out. Anyway, from what the GI says, liver enzymes are really sensitive, and can be elevated for almost any reason, but fatty liver is hard to turn around, and the liver enzymes will stay elevated until it's corrected. I still am learning about the consequences of fatty liver, I know that it's usually a benign disease, but that it can have a progressive course I think, probably if there are other assalts going on towards the liver, like alot of alcohol. Also, it seems to put you at high risk for diabetes, which really has me worried because that's already in my family. Anyway, alot of doctors don't worry much about high liver enzymes because there are just so many causes, like if you drink at all, tylenol, etc. And, supposedly they are not that easy to go down, like if he has a fatty liver, I think they will continue to stay high. I went to "Ask Jeeves" on my computer, typed in fatty liver, and it brought up some interesting sites, including the one my Sandra Cabot. I can't really recommed her since I don't really know anything about her program yet, I am just letting you know what's out there. Good luck! Val

     
    Old 06-24-2002, 08:01 PM   #4
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    Val-
    Thanks for the response!I would have to say that yes my husband is over weight for his height. He said the dr. said he is not.The dr. did say that he could have put on extra weight due to the swollen liver. Thanks for the suggestion to check out "Ask Jeeves". I will also check into the book at the librabry, or others like it! Glad to hear that we are not the only ones going through this! Let me know what your dr says about the cleansing diet. I too don't like to try stuff without checking into it first!

    Denise
    SAHM to 2 beautiful girls

     
    Old 06-27-2002, 01:57 AM   #5
    ralve
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    Hi, I haven't been on here in a while, I hope things are going ok!! I haven't been to my GI yet, and I really need to make this appointment tomorrow. I feel ok, just really tired alot, and I have alot of weight in my abdomen right now which I feel is just not in proportion to the rest of me, or normal. I'm worried about having fluid accumulation which I have been reading about. By the way, I couldn't find Dr. Sandra Cabot's book at the bookstore, I ordered it from her site, it may be available, I just couldn't find it. And, I have another good book on liver disorders that goes into detail about fatty liver and NASH. This one was called Dr. Melissa Palmer's Guide to Hepatitis & Liver Disease , What you Need to Know, by Melissa Palmer, MD. This one I found at Barnes and Noble. I don't understand yet really the difference between fatty liver and NASH, I suppose NASH is the consequence of fatty liver, but I'm not sure yet. I wish I knew what was going on with my liver right now, and then I could help myself more. I know I should be sticking to a good diet, but for some reason, I keep being really bad about that! By the way, do you know if your husband's GGT levels were high? I had a high reading of those also, and I was reading in one place where that can be due to fatty liver, but then in other places I read where that is due to other liver disorders. I know that some dotors always due biopsies to determine for sure that it's fatty liver, but my GI didn't think it was really necessary. I guess he was just so sure about what the diagnosis would be. Anyway, good luck, and I'll let you know more about fatty liver when I go to my doctor. Val

     
    Old 07-12-2002, 09:09 PM   #6
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    Well my husband went for his liver biopsy. He definitley has NASH, the early stages of it. He has scar tissue on the liver, plus his liver and spleen are swollen. The doctor said that he must diet and exercise, so the NASH does not develop into scroisis of the liver (which the dr said can happen in about 20 years). The doctor recommended that he follow the Diabetic Diet. Now the doctor is checking for diabetes, since NASH is something that is common among diabetics....you would think that would be true since another name for NASH is diabetic hepatitis. It would not surprise me if he has it since his father and uncle both have it and my husband is a bit overweight. So we should know more the begining of next week! I will be going to the library tomorrow to read up on this!

    Denise

     
    Old 07-20-2002, 10:46 PM   #7
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    Hi, I hope your husband is doing good, I haven't been on here in a while, and am on vacation in Nevada right now, so here I am using my parent's computer. Anyway, that's what I was wondering about, how can my GI tell if I just have fatty liver, or if it is NASH? He didn't seem to think I should do a biopsy yet, he said to try to loose weight, and come back in 6 months to check the enzyme levels again. Easier said than done! Even with motivation like that, it is still hard, especially on vacation, it's easy to just forget about the whole thing, and pretend it's not there. Especially since I don't have any symptoms, except that I find I am tired a lot. Anyway, thanks for the info on the diabetic diet, do you have any suggestions on a good book to follow, I get very confused about what the diabetic diet really is. I think it's to eat more protein, and right now I definitely have more carbs than protein, and I really don't know what's right to do. Thanks for the info, and I hope you're husband's doing good. I've been reading up on NASH, and fatty liver, and at least it seems like it is something that we can control, and that you can stop the progression of it. I have been taking Vitamin E, that's supposed to be really good for it, my doctor even mentioned that, and they don't usually talk about vitamins. I don't know if I'm taking enough, though, I take 400 IU per day. Anyway, good luck to you guys! Let me know how you're doing. Val

     
    Old 07-21-2002, 01:10 PM   #8
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    You might want to have the dr. check for hemachromatosis also. It also is a liver disorder that can be deadly but is treatable and looks similar to cirrosis and hepatitus.

     
    Old 07-26-2002, 12:53 PM   #9
    jodykrumwiede
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    Denise-I would love for you to keep us posted on how your husband is doing. We are going through a VERY similar sounding problem. My husband is 31, very active and physically fit. He quit smoking in March and doesn't drink either. In June he went to the Dr. for extreme abdominal pain and bloating when he ingested anything, even water (looked nine months prego-no joke.) He's been blood tested for everything under the sun, had an ultrasound, upper GI, colonoscopy and liver biopsy. They've found swollen liver, spleen and enlarged prostrate gland and intestinal ulcers. He presents high liver enzymes, high cholesteral and elevated H-pylori. Our Dr. cannot pinpoint the cause of any of this and only recently began a regimen of Pentasa for the inflammation. What's really rough is his paternal grandmother, uncle and his father have all died young of undiagnosed abdomen problems (his father just passed away 05/31/01. Needless to say we are very drained, emotionally and physically. Your story is so similar, would really appreciate hearing how things turn out. Best of luck!

     
    Old 08-26-2002, 12:20 AM   #10
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    Hi, I hope you're all doing well! I am still coming up with elevated liver enzymes, but haven't lost the weight yet that I need to do for these to come down. The things that scares me, is I hope this is just fatty liver, but I guess it could be NASH, and the only way to tell the difference is with a bispsy, right? My doctor seemed to think I had fatty liver, my ALT is the one that is highest, it seems to range about 30 above normal. My concern is, if I've had this for a long time, I could already have cirossis? I don't drink and my problem is just being overweight. I do have diabetes in my family also, and am not sure if I've been tested for that or not. I guess I need to go back to the doctor with all of these questions. It's so scary, cause I think most of us didn't even think about our livers, and then here we are with these high liver enzymes, and now that's all I think about! On the one hand, I hear that high enzymes are common, and then other places I hear that it's a serious thing. Fatty liver, I don't think, is too serious, it's just the more serious form of fatty liver called NASH that can progress to cirossis, from what I have learned. Can NASH progression be slowed down at all?? Thanks for all the help, and I hope you're all doing great, Val

     
    Old 08-26-2002, 08:36 AM   #11
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    Hello All-
    I am so sorry that I have not been updating you on my husband! Well his liver biopsy went ok. He was suppose to go in for an outpatient procedure, but his liver enzyimes were over 500 so the doctor decided to admit him to the hospital (now we are fighting with the insurance over this). When he was in the hospital his liver enzyimes actually went down to 411, but that was just a fluke!They have gone up again, I am not sure how high (he goes to the dr. today so we will see what they are). He definitley does have NASH as well as a fatty liver, but I am starting to think that it is the same thing (like valger said). His doctor told him that he must loose 20 lbs (he has lost 5 so far), really watch his diet and NO drinking! The doctor said that the NASH can turn into scrosis of the liver in about 20 years.Plus the docot said to diet like he has diabetes (he does have that yet!). So really we are kind of still in the same boat, as far as not really knowing why the enzyimes are going up! He was tested for a bunch of stuff in the hospital and everything seems to be pointing to NASH. So maybe once he goes to the doctor today we might know today. I will try to post more as I know!

    Denise

     
    Old 08-27-2002, 05:07 PM   #12
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    Hi, thanks for updating us! I hope all is going well for you. I was wondering, did you say your husband got the shots for Hep A & B? I was wondering if I should get those since I have an exsisting liver problem. I knew that I should get them if I had HepC, but if it's just fatty liver, I wonder if that's as important. I still am waiting to go back for more blood tests, so I was thinking it might be smart to get them since they still don't really know what the problem is with my liver. It's scary when you read all those posts under Hepatitis about the outbreaks of A & B. Did your doctor advise you one way or the other? Thanks in advance for any info! Also, one more thing, is your husband taking any Vitamin E? I heard that was good for scarring of the liver. I'm not sure about mulitvitamins, though. I heard those are hard on the liver. Thanks again! Val

     
    Old 10-23-2003, 03:22 PM   #13
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    Jody, have him tested for Celiacs disease. This is a common misdiagnosed (GI)disease that doctors don't test enough for. People will often get elevated liver enzymes with it and the doctors can't figure out what's going on...just a suggestion. I have Celiacs disease also...with elevated liver enzymes which are almost normal since I've eaten absolutely NO gluten for 3 years.

     
    Old 07-22-2005, 05:16 AM   #14
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    Re: high liver enzyimes and liver biopsy

    Follow the Dr Sandra Cabot lead - it works.

     
    Old 07-22-2005, 08:55 AM   #15
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    Re: high liver enzyimes and liver biopsy

    I had extremely high lft's. Mine were in the thousands when I finally went into the hospital. They all thought I had hepatitis A B or C. After 5 panels of negative results, I was sent to a university hospital. There I was finally diagnosed with Autoimmune hepatitis. My own immune system is attacking my liver. It can be a heriditary condition. (mom & gramps have thyroid disease, cousin has lupus - they are all autoimmune disorders.) I was given many drugs to stop the liver failure. I was on Prednisone for almost a year. There is no cure for what I have, but treatments of steroids and immunesuppresents keep my liver stable and my immune system low so it does not attack. Many doctors forget to check for this illness with liver conditions. It is very rare, but it can happen. I had all the classic signs of regular hep and of other liver diseases. But there are certain blood tests that mark high to support an AIH diagnosis. ALso, using steroids lowers the LFT numbers. I wish your husband all the luck. Tina

     
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