Did you know that umpteen counts of chemicals are required by the body to function normally? Well, this is where the role of liver steps in. Not only is it a vital organ but is also a gland. It secretes numerous chemicals that are required to wrap up regular bodily functions. From speeding up metabolism to detoxifying the bloodstream, this organ has a marked importance. Sometimes, the liver is also known as a storage unit. Wondering why? Well, plenty of nutrients like proteins, vitamins, and minerals are stacked in the organ and released for better functioning in the body. Therefore, any sort of liver disease could turn deadly if not treated early. One of the known disorders associated with liver is elevated enzymes.
Although the liver plays a big-league role, it also highlights that the organ is at work every second. There are times when the organ can be overworked or distressed due to an impact of a disease. Not only does it cause damage to the liver cells, but the organ becomes highly inflamed. Consequences caused are not quite likable. It has been repeatedly mentioned that the liver is responsible for creating enzymes. Some of the popular enzymes the organ creates and has a massive role in the human body system include:
- Alanine transaminase (ALT)
- Aspartate transaminase (AST)
- Alkaline Phosphatase (ALP)
- Gamma Glutamyl Transpeptidase (GGT)
When the liver undergoes inflammation, it leaks out enzymes into the bloodstreams.
This spiked concentration of enzymes in the bloodstream can naturally be detected in tests. This condition is termed as elevated liver enzymes. Let’s quickly delve into the causes of the elevated liver enzyme.
What are the real causes of increased liver enzymes?
- Alcoholic liver disease – This clearly refers to an injury of the organ because of constant alcohol abuse. Post consumption, alcohol breaks down into the system creating acetaldehyde. This is a highly toxic chemical, affecting the liver at large.
- Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease – The condition is prevalent amongst people who drink less or no alcohol at all. Diagnosis shows that there is an abnormal pile-up of fat in the organ. If not checked, it may lead to obesity and type 2 diabetes.
- Liver injury due to medication – If you are prone to taking medicines for every other reason, particularly the non-prescribed over-the-counter ones, chances of putting up with intense liver damage simply doubles. Pain relievers, aspirin and even a couple of antibiotics cast a bad spell on the organ.
- Viral hepatitis – This is a disorder wherein the liver inflames due to viral attack.It usually causes hepatitis A, B and C and all of these are chronic.
- Haemochromatosis – This condition refers to an iron metabolism disorder and is usually inherited. Excess iron in the body, just like any other nutrients stacks up in the liver. This abnormal accumulation paves way for liver damage.
- Wilson’s Disease – Pretty much like Haemochromatosis, this disease is caused due to the surplus accumulation of copper in the liver, brain, eyes and other organs. It is life-threatening as it can damage the organ by large.
- Autoimmune hepatitis – The condition shows up when the body’s own immune system attacks the organ. This is quite unlikely because the body’s immunity system comes into play to rule out bacteria or virus. Call it an aftermath of genetic factors or environmental factors, it battles out the body’s very own cells. This causes the liver to enlarge and swell up, thus creating hepatitis.
Prominent symptoms that make it clear that you are affected with slightly elevated liver enzymes:
- Jaundice – Are you worried that your skin and eyes are turning yellowish? Well, quite possibly you are targeted with jaundice. The condition shoots up when there is a higher accumulation of bilirubin. It is a fluid produced by the liver. In most cases, a healthy liver would ward off this fluid but an impaired one fails to do so, causing jaundice.
- Enlargement of the organ – This condition is medically termed as ‘Hepatomegaly’. Elevated enzymes cause the organ to enlarge in size, paving way for a lot of discomfort and pain.
- One might even deal with nausea and vomiting.
- A sudden cut-back in appetite resulting in weight loss.
- Weakness in muscles.
- Pressing pain in the abdomen.
- Tremendous fatigue and shortness of breath.
- Elevated enzymes are often paired with celiac disease. In such a condition, the body fails to soak up gluten which leads to bloating and diarrhea.
- The liver is an organ, also associated with the metabolism of sex hormones. You might as well deal with a cut-back in sex drive.
- One might put up with frequent bleeding and bruise because the livers fail to generate blood clots.
Rest well and resort to healthy food habit for best results. Upon successful diagnose, proceed with the medications as prescribed. Slightly elevated liver enzymes must be brought to normal before it turns into a terrible malady.