If we consider enzymes in a general way, then these are basically specific proteins that are present in the bodies if living organisms and these specific proteins basically speed up the chemical reactions that take place within the bodies.
Now, there are certain enzymes also present in the liver and these also perform the basic functions of enzymes. The fact is that these are specific enzymes of liver that remain inside the liver and speed up the chemical reactions taking place. If we consider the two most common liver enzymes, then these include AST and ALT.
AST is the abbreviation of the enzyme names as Aspartate Aminotransferase whereas the ALT is the abbreviation of the enzyme names as the Alanine Aminotransferase. Both of these enzymes are present in the liver but in case if the liver of the individual becomes damaged, then these enzymes pass into the bloodstream of the individual. Well, the damage is mostly caused by some kind of virus or it can even be damaged due to the use of some specific drugs. Some medications also damage the liver. So, generally, the quantity of these enzymes in the blood is very limited but due to certain conditions and the damage caused got he liver, these enzymes can become more in quantity in the bloodstream and by measuring this count, we can identify that whether an individual is suffering from any liver damage or not.
If we consider the amount of these enzymes present in the blood, then basically two situations of conditions arise. First is the case that the overall quantity or numerical value of these enzymes is within the specified range. This condition normally depicts that the liver is absolutely fine and working in the best way. The second condition is that the range of these enzymes in the blood increases beyond the limited range and this depicts that the liver is not healthy. It gives an indication that something is wrong with the liver. So, this way can be used to identify that whether the liver of the individual is working fine or not.
Liver blood tests
These tests named as the liver blood tests are used in order to identify and check for the elevated levels of certain liver enzymes. These blood tests help the doctors in order to find that whether their is any kind of inflammation, liver cell damage etc.
Elevated liver enzymes
Now doctors check the levels of liver enzymes by conducting various blood tests and these tests basically provide a value for the liver enzymes. As already discussed these enzymes can either be AST or ALT. If the level of any of these enzymes becomes more or increases, then there would be an issue with the liver of the indicates. Now, if we consider about the elevated levels of these enzymes, then for the ALT or also known as Alanine Aminotransferase, the normal range for an adult individual ranges in between 7-56 units per liter of serum. This is referred to as the normal range of this enzyme. If the amount or quantity of ALT in blood increases from this range, then we say that the enzyme level is elevated.
Now if we consider the normal range of AST or Aspartate Aminotransferase, then it ranges from 5-40 units per liter of serum. So again, this is the normal range of liver enzyme and if this level exceeds, then it will depict that there is something wrong with the liver of the individual.
Causes of elevation
There are various factors that can be considered to be the cause of the elevation of these enzymes. For instance, these ALT and AST levels can be elevated because of some viral infection of liver, excessive use of alcohol, cirrhosis and iron overload. Apart from these, it may even be caused because if shocks and heart failure as well. So these are some of the causes that are actively involved in elevating the levels of these enzymes in the blood of an individual.
So, based on the above discussion, what I conclude is that the elevated liver enzymes include the AST and ALT. When these enzymes would be more in quantity than their normal range, then it would depict that liver is not healthy and liver is not performing normally.