Transaminase enzymes are localized within cells. There are two types of them: aspartame aminotransferase (AST) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT). Their blood levels increase with damage to the cells of the liver, heart, kidneys or muscles, so the analysis is carried out in the diagnosis of viral hepatitis, cirrhosis or myocardial infarction. What is the rate of ALT in the blood of women?
The value of transaminase levels in the blood
Transaminases are enzymes that have high metabolic activity in cells. Their increase reflects cell damage. The function of transaminases is to ensure the transfer of amino acids during metabolism and chemical processes inside the cell. ALTs predominate in liver cells, while AST is predominantly found in muscles, in particular, in the heart.
These enzymes are not formed elements of blood and do not perform any functions to be in it. However, there are such "accidents" when they infest blood, in other words, their content in it indicates malfunctions in certain organs. Transaminases can be released when various muscles are injured. The destruction of liver cells is also the reason why these enzymes are in the blood plasma.
However, the destruction of liver cells is not unusual. Like any other cells in our body, they are subject to natural circulation. Old liver cells are destroyed and their contents are released into the blood. It is this natural turnover that determines the normal allowable value of the content of the enzymes AST and ALT in human blood. An increase in these values above the natural level of cell degradation indicates the presence of disorders. However, this is not enough for a definitive diagnosis, and for now it is just an alarm.
The diagnostic value has a specific quantitative measurement of ALT content, the ratio of transaminase levels to each other and comparison with other parameters. Thus, transaminase levels in the blood are associated with cell damage and play a major role in the diagnosis of diseases of the liver, heart, or to detect myopathy.
Blood test for ALT
In the blood of women, the rate of the enzymes ALT and AST is clearly defined. In order to study them in a particular situation, a biochemical blood test is performed. For this purpose, samples of venous blood taken from a vein in the elbow bend are used. Blood must be taken on an empty stomach, at least after eight hours of fasting.
The level of transaminases can vary in different analytical laboratories, and also depends on the gender of the patient, his weight, body temperature and age.
As a rule, the rate of ALT in the blood analysis in women under the age of 60 years is from 7.0 to 35.0 U / l. With age, the level of enzymes in the blood gradually becomes lower. Thus, the upper limit of the ALT norm in the blood of women after 50 years gradually reaches a value of 28.0 U / l and in old age it varies from 5.0 to 24.0 U / l.
It should be borne in mind before taking blood samples for research that the level of transaminase may increase when taking certain medications:
- oral contraceptives;
- antiepileptic drugs;
Also increases the concentration of enzymes leads to the use of alcohol, the toxic effects of cocaine or solvents. An increase in ATL levels can occur in pregnant women as a result of preeclampsia in the later stages, and it decreases with vitamin B6 deficiency.
What do abnormalities indicate?
During laboratory tests, which should clarify the condition of the liver, transaminase levels are examined in mutual correlation. If an increase in one of the two enzymes or their resultant is found in the study, then it can with some probability mean damage to the liver. Moreover, the increase in the level correlates with the degree of organ damage.
The ratio of AST and ALT describes the de Rytis coefficient. In the mild form of liver cell damage, it is less than 1, in severe cases it is more than 1. With extensive hepatocellular necrosis, for example, as part of viral hepatitis, transaminase levels can increase significantly. A decrease in laboratory parameters in the further course of the disease may indicate both an improvement in the condition and an incipient liver failure with extensive destruction of the liver cell parenchyma.
Due to the fact that ALT in the heart muscle is contained in insignificant amounts, if myocardial damage occurs, only an increase in AST can be expected. This increase can be detected within the first four hours to 3-6 days after the onset of myocardial infarction. If there is an increase in ALT after a heart attack, this may indicate liver damage due to insufficiency of the right ventricle of the heart muscle or to concomitant diseases of this organ of another type.
Other diagnostic indicators:
- ALT is higher than AST in hepatitis, as well as in the case of acute alcohol poisoning, in case of insufficiency of the right ventricle of the heart and congestion of the liver. Some medications and liver damage such as cholangitis or cholestasis can cause this condition.
- A 50-fold increase in ALT can occur with hepatitis A forms, E, or acute mushroom poisoning.
- In the case of chronic hepatitis, the values usually increase up to 25 times.
Pathological causes of elevated transaminases:
- overweight and obesity;
- hepatic ischemia;
- secondary liver damage in autoimmune disease;
- Wilson's disease;
- liver tumor, cancer;
- alcoholism, cirrhosis, steatosis;
- chronic pancreatitis;
It is important to note that an increase in transaminases does not necessarily lead to the diagnosis of the underlying disease. After a few weeks, an even more complete blood count should be performed to confirm or deny the diagnosis.