What To Think About
- Aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT) are blood tests done to check liver function. Both ALT and AST levels show liver damage and may be done to help diagnose liver disease. A liver biopsy may be done when AST and ALT levels are very high and no other reason for high levels is found. For more information, see the topics Reference Aspartate Aminotransferase (AST) and Reference Alanine Aminotransferase (ALT).
- A liver biopsy should not be done on people who have bleeding or blood clotting problems, or certain types of infections.
- A transvenous liver biopsy is another method that may be used. During this test, a radiologist inserts a thin tube (catheter) into a neck vein, which is guided to the liver. A sample can be taken through the catheter.
- If a larger sample of liver tissue is needed, an open biopsy of the liver may be done at another time, using surgery or Reference laparoscopy Opens New Window. A liver biopsy is sometimes done at the same time as another abdominal surgery. For more information, see the topic Reference Laparoscopy.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference December 13, 2011|
|Medical Review:||Reference E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Reference Michel M. Murr, MD - General Surgery, Bariatric Surgery