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What are potential causes for high liver enzymes?

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Quick Answer

Potential causes for high liver enzymes include diseases and conditions such as heart failure, hepatitis A and B, obesity and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, according to Mayo clinic. Certain prescription medications, such as statin drugs used for managing cholesterol levels, and alcohol consumption may also elevate the liver enzyme level.

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Full Answer

High liver enzymes may also be caused by over-the-counter pain medications such as acetaminophen, states Mayo clinic. Alcoholic hepatitis and autoimmune hepatitis, as well as celiac disease, which is damage of the small intestines due to gluten, may also increase the levels. Other causes include cirrhosis and dermatomyositis, an inflammatory condition that weakens the muscles and can cause a skin rash. More contributing factors include gallbladder inflammation, liver cancer, hemochromatosis due to an excess of stored iron, hypothyroidism and pancreas inflammation.

Similarly, polymyositis, an inflammatory condition that results in muscle weakness, can cause high liver enzymes, explains Mayo Clinic. Toxic hepatitis and Wilson’s disease, caused by too much copper in the body, can be contributing factors, as can muscular dystrophy.

Liver enzyme tests includes AST, ALT, alkaline phosphatase and other true liver function tests, states WebMD. Each individual patient is evaluated based on symptoms, history, medications and various other factors, notes Mayo Clinic.

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