Elevated liver enzymes – symptoms and treatment

Elevated liver enzymes - symptoms and treatment

Many liver diseases are recognized late. The tricky thing about liver disease is that the liver doesn’t feel pain and sends out no warning signs. Possible complaints could be more specific. So, it often stays with the classification as everyday complaints such as “stress” or “chronic exhaustion”.

Pay attention to unfamiliar or new body signals. If you are concerned, talk to your doctor. A precise description of the symptoms enables the doctor to initiate further investigations. If you are aware of elevated liver values, the cause of this change must be investigated.

Symptoms of liver disease

Symptoms that may indicate liver or bile disease:

  • Constant tiredness, difficulty concentrating
  • The feeling of pressure in the upper right abdomen
  • itching
  • Clay-colored stool and beer-brown urine
  • Loss of appetite, disgust with certain foods, especially meat
  • Weight changes, nausea and vomiting, bloating
  • nosebleeds and bruises
  • yellowing of the skin or eyes
  • Frequent muscle and joint pain
  • Reduction in body hair on the chest or abdomen in men
  • Often increased liver values ​​gamma-GT, GOT and GPT

If you have noticed these symptoms before, talk to your doctor.


treatment of liver diseases

There is no panacea for every liver disease. If a disease is diagnosed, the treatment options are different depending on the cause – sometimes even opposite: 

  • For example, hepatitis C is currently treated primarily with drugs that are intended to stimulate the immune system to fight the virus (interferons).
  • In the case of autoimmune hepatitis, in which your immune system attacks the liver, you try to suppress the immune system.
  • In overweight patients with fatty liver disease (NASH), a change in diet with gentle weight reduction is often the priority.

Avoid additional stress on the liver.

Regardless of the cause of the liver disease, avoid substances that put additional strain on the liver. This includes alcohol, in particular. Smoking can also make liver disease worse. Non-essential medications should also be avoided.

It becomes more difficult if you have to take medication for another serious illness, and this puts a strain on the liver. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about whether there are better-tolerated preparations. Under no circumstances should you stop taking necessary medication (e.g. high blood pressure medication or epileptics) without consulting your doctor just because your liver values ​​are elevated.


Who can help?

If you are concerned that you may have liver disease based on your symptoms or liver values, ask your doctor for advice. If in doubt, consulting a specialist who deals intensively with the area can make sense.

Liver disease specialists include hepatologists and gastroenterologists. They work either in private practice or in clinics. Contact a doctor you trust.


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