AST Blood Test
AST (aspartate aminotransferase), also known as SGOT (serum glutamic-oxaloacetic transaminase), is a blood test that measures the level of AST in the blood. AST is an enzyme found primarily in the liver, heart, and muscles. The AST blood test is used to evaluate the health of these organs and to diagnose or monitor certain medical conditions.
An AST blood test may be ordered if a healthcare provider suspects that a patient has liver damage or disease, such as hepatitis or cirrhosis. AST levels in the blood may also be elevated in the presence of other medical conditions, such as a heart attack, muscle damage, or certain cancers.
During the test, a small sample of blood is taken from a vein in the arm and sent to a laboratory for analysis. The normal range for AST levels in the blood varies depending on the laboratory, but generally falls between 10 and 40 units per liter (U/L).
Elevated AST levels may indicate liver damage or disease, such as viral hepatitis, alcoholic hepatitis, or cirrhosis. AST levels may also be elevated in the presence of muscle damage, such as in the case of a heart attack or muscular dystrophy. In some cases, elevated AST levels may be a sign of a more serious medical condition, such as liver cancer or pancreatic cancer.
It is important to note that elevated AST levels do not necessarily indicate a specific medical condition, and further testing may be required to diagnose or monitor the condition. A healthcare provider can interpret the results of an AST blood test in the context of the individual’s medical history and other test results, and develop an appropriate treatment plan if necessary.
This page is provided for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute the provision of medical advice or professional services. The information provided should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, and those seeking personal medical advice regarding any of the tests and conditions referenced above are advised to consult with a licensed clinician. Always seek the advice of your qualified health provider regarding a medical condition and do not disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of any information on this page. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call 911 or go to the nearest urgent care center or hospital.
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