Elevated alkaline phosphatase is an indicator for Paget's disease, liver cancer and ulcerative colitis, states LabTestsOnline. Doctors require further tests to measure bilirubin, aspartate aminotransferase and alanine aminotransferase in order to determine whether the elevated level comes from the liver or from a bone disorder.
Paget's disease occurs when bone tissue breaks down and regrows, leading to deformed and enlarged bones, notes Cleveland Clinic. The disease often affects pelvic bones, the collarbone, the leg bones and the humerus, making them heavy and brittle. As of 2015 doctors do not know the exact cause of Paget's disease but believe it results from an infection that is present for years before patients experience symptoms.
Liver cancer destroys healthy liver cells and impairs liver function, explains Healthline. The precise cause is uncertain, but risk factors include advanced age, chronic hepatitis B or C infection, cirrhosis, and daily consumption of two or more alcoholic beverages over a period of years. The first indications of liver cancer include jaundice, bruising or bleeding easily, and abdominal pain.
Ulcerative colitis is a disease that leads to inflammation in the lining of the colon and rectum, reports Cleveland Clinic. Patients with ulcerative colitis experience intermittent flares that lead to symptoms such as bloody stools, fever and abdominal pain. The cause of ulcerative colitis is not known, but doctors hypothesize that the condition is due to an autoimmune response to bacteria or food in the intestines.