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Date of last update: 10/21/2017.

Forum Name: Liver Cancer

Question: Elevated ALT, GGT, cholesterol, LDL and triglycerides!

 kaitka - Sat Mar 17, 2007 3:10 pm

My husband just had bloodwork done for a life insurance policy. We've always thought he was very healthy - he never gets sick or anything. We got the lab results back in the mail today. His ALT level is 58 (normal is 0 - 45), his GGT level is 75 (0 - 51 is normal). His cholesterol is 247!!! His LDL Cholesterol is 159 (0 -129 is normal). His Triglycerides are 189 (0-150 is normal). I am in shock!
He is 27 years old, 5'9", 180 pounds. He's gained a bit in the past couple months, so his cholesterol doesn't SHOCK me. But his liver enzymes are all off kilter! And we have no reason for it at all. He drinks maybe 3 times a year, hasn't SERIOUSLY drank in at least a year. He used to be a very athletic guy, was in the Army. Never had any problems. They tested him for Hepatits C, which was negative, but not for A or B. We have no health insurance on him (as he always claimed he was "the healthy one"), so I'm not sure what steps to take from here. Are these levels VERY high or just moderately high? I know his cholesterol is WAY too high (considered high-risk category), but the liver stuff confuses me. I guess liver disease is pretty rare in America. At least that's what the research I've done tells me. What could be wrong? He's around a lot of cleaning agents at work. Could that be it?
 kaitka - Sat Mar 17, 2007 3:19 pm

Oh, I forgot to mention... his AST level was 25, which is not abnormal. And that's also related to the liver. So I'm just totally confused!
 kaitka - Sat Mar 17, 2007 3:35 pm

I also want to include that his Albumin level is 4.8, which is supposedly slightly high. His ALP is normal. His bilirubin is low.
 Dr. Chan Lowe - Sat Mar 17, 2007 6:13 pm

User avatar Your husband's cholesterol may be the culprit of his elevated liver enzymes. Elevated cholesterol can cause a condition known as fatty liver that can lead to elevated liver enzymes.

His ALT and GGT are only slightly elevated. As you say his AST is normal. The albumin level of 4.8 is not concerning. Low albumin levels are more concerning for liver failure. The low bilirubin level means that his liver is working well. I would recommend having his liver enzymes rechecked in a few months after some cholesterol modification steps.

Having no symptoms with an elevated cholesterol is almost always the case. Thus it is known as a silent killer. It can be elevated for many years leading to heart disease without any symptoms at all.

A healthy diet and exercise are key to cholesterol control. If this is not sufficient there are medications that can help.

I hope this helps. Best wishes.
 kaitka - Sat Mar 17, 2007 7:19 pm

Yeah, I found some information on NAFLD online and it seemed eerily representative of the lab results. We've talked about it and while he's not concerned, I've told him he's going to be having a diet makeover. Gaining 30 pounds in 3 months isn't normal! He's gained it all in his abdomen too, and I found something about Central Obesity, which relates to metabolism. I found that interesting, as his diet and activity haven't changed any and yet he's gained all this weight. Does it all tie together?
 Dr. Chan Lowe - Sat Mar 17, 2007 9:32 pm

User avatar As people get older metabolism generally slows down. Even small changes in the amount of exercise or increased calorie intake can have significant effects.

While the liver enzymes are not incredibly worrisome at this point, they are certainly a warning signal that things are not right. If healthy changes are not made, worse problems may develop.

Best wishes.

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