Are blood tests mostly right to rule out....

Posted , 14 users are following.

I have going through the posts and was impressed on the discussions/answers that's

been posted and wanted to share my story.

I'm a 55 yr old female and used to have an occassional 3-6 beers through the week/weekend.

Then in 2014-2015 I upped that to include 2-3 days of the week and drank on the 3 day weekend I had(6-9)on each those days.

I think I had turned into an alcoholic because of the amount/craving for beer. In Nov 2015 I took Ill with respiratory system issues (pleurisy they think) and laid off of any beer totally, then in Jan & Feb had a couple weekend beer binges (3-6) and one night had 1/2 bottle red wine and it made my arms itch...scared the crap out me, due to my fears that I compromised my liver. Since that time, I may have had a total of 6 beers in the following 3 months (no itching with beer just wine). Then during Memorial Day weekend, I splurged with greasy wings and 2 beers, that evening I started experiencing some discomfort in my RU Qudruant. So, I went to my doctor and she said my GERD was acting up and told me to go back on my Omeprasile for a month. I told her about my past drink inking and that it concerned me. I was also having kidney/groin pain and she thinks I passed small stone as there was blood in urine and is sending me for ct scan. I had a CBC and Comp Panel done and my Alt, Ast, Bilirubin etc. came out fine and the doctor said I didn't have what I expected, which was Cirrhosis. I had a short "thank goodness" moment but still question this as I don't have a gall bladder and the occasional pain is located below and under ribs. (It gurgles at times too). She pushed on the area and I had a very slight discomfort. She did say that she thought I had an ulcer and possibly a fatty liver.

For instance I wonder if the blood tests I had are "mostly" correct for ruling out cirrhosis?

Could the rib pain be from swelling and if so does it go down? If it's a fatty liver does it make it larger and cause pain from crowding things? If a person does have cirrhosis is there vitamins that help it regenerate new cells etc?

In the end I will follow my doctors advice, but

would like your inputs.

1 like, 51 replies

51 Replies

  • Posted

    What you have drunk over the years doesn't sound enough to cause major liver damage but if course I'm not a doctor

    I've had clear liver tests recently but from what I've heard in here recently and with my symptoms I'm not sure that I don't have liver damage.The only real test is a liver scan

  • Posted

    I guess it really depends on the person. I had a liver scan a few months ago and they said I was fine but on my way to damaging my liver. I was consuming between 10-20 units of vodka a day for over 10 years. I'm sure someone on these forums can give you advice on vitamins to help with your liver.
  • Posted

    I guess it really depends on the person. I had a liver scan a few months ago and they said I was fine but on my way to damaging my liver. I was consuming between 10-20 units of vodka a day for over 10 years. I'm sure someone on these forums can give you advice on vitamins to help with your liver.
    • Posted

      Did you have the liver scan due to pain? Glad they told you that yours was fine, it could have been beyond that which is my fear. Some of the seasoned peoples posts were great and in hopes they will post me.
  • Posted

    Hi, bb, your drinking doesn't seem to be at ridiculously high levels, but if you have any concerns you should take your doctor's advice
  • Posted

    Perhaps it doesn't sound like a lot, but to me 30-50 beers a week is significant. 
    • Posted

      Sorry, I think I misunderstood. Yes, that is very significant.
    • Posted

      Yes, i thought I should tally up the amount per week for everyone to see

      as I went over a lot of different things. 

      It took a lot for me to reach out and admit this, even on a message board site.

  • Posted

    Interesting question, one that I'd like to answer, but I will be fresher in the morning and can then answer it best, please do revisit tomorrow.
    • Posted

      Will check in...thank you.
    • Posted

      I can categorically state that a 'clear' LFT from a doctor is not a guarantee of no cirrhosis. It is a guide, that is all, we are all different and don't get the same results. The letter from my gastro last month had the following three sentences.

      I am pleased to say that he seems to have recompensated (liver).

      His liver function has gone back to normal.

      He has got Child-Pugh A alcoholic liver disease.

      I find that one of those sentences, does not sit well with the other two. I am in hospital this Saturday to have a liver scan - an ultrasound, just like they do for pregent woman. Which is the only real way as far as I know, to detect cirrhosis. I have had them before.

      I was reading a thread in another part of the forum recently and a woman was talking about her husband just having had a liver transplant, due to Hep C, not ALD and that the LFTs were coming back fine right up until the transplant.

      You may want to have a look at this current thread in the liver section. There are two people stating (James & Hazel) that they had hsd repeated tests and being told 'in the clear' only to be told some time later, actually we have bad news for you.

      Here's a few lines from the British Liver trust website.

      Different diseases of the liver will cause different types of damage and will affect liver function tests accordingly. It is possible to suggest which disease may be present from a liver function test but these tests are not the conclusive way of diagnosing liver disease. They are helpful, but only part of the picture. They are also useful for monitoring someone with liver disease, but are not always accurate.

      It is well accepted that in certain liver diseases (Hepatitis C, for example) the liver function test may not accurately show the extent of inflammation or fibrosis (formation of scar tissue)

    • Posted

      Hi RHGB,

      I read the post and was dis heartened that her "normal reading" wasn't normal and can't imagine what she is going through, though I pray she gets s donor if need be.

      Your post, was not the words that I had hoped to read and what I wanted to hear is that they were accurate. I guess as with any testing they aren't 100% , but wish I knew the ratio of their accuracy percentage wise.

      50/50....20/80 etc. Since you listed your test results as stage 1(A) and it's the lesser of all the stages, I wonder if that is why your #'s came out normal? Sort of like if something is

      running at 70% compacity but the numbers are good then they just keep an eye on it...if that makes sense.

      My cousin was in Vietnam and got into Agent Orange which did a number on his liver and I watched him turn a dark yellow over the years to an almost black color. He has a rare blood type and finding a donor was difficult. Finally, he found one, a live donor (a neighbor and friend) and they grafted a piece of his liver to my cousins liver and both recuperated well. Actually, I hear him on his tractor now on the next farm over. smile

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    • Posted

      The LFT provide an indicator, which can be different in each individual. As per the words copied from the British Liver Trust in my post above, they're not conclusive. And you have read someone's account (actually there was James on that thread as well) who were repeatedly told they were fine and then suddenly had a bomshell dropped on them.

      She is unlikely to be inline for a transplant, because with a decompensated liver, she is probably not yet bad enough for one. You have to be really ill before you will be considered for one.

      They use Child-Pugh scores (each class has it's own score) for liver transplant requirement and also MELD - Model End stage Liver Disease, which has a slightly different scoring system.

      The reason my results came through well, is that now I have stopped drinking, the good part of my liver has recompensated and that is what is giving the results. I still have a damaged part of the liver and that will never improve. I have had another set of tests LFT done, but these are for my comprehensive than the stand ones that are done and mine are ebing read by a gastro, not a GP. I will get those after my liver scan and gastroscopy in the next week.

      And as I have just mentioned, I will also be having the liver scan and this will be done by someone who is actively looking for signs of further damage.

      I'm not trying to scare people, in the main, for most people, a standard LFT by the GP will be accurate. Just not 100% all the time and if you believe you have things that may be indicative of a problem, please raise them with your GP and ask them to take your concerns seriously.

    • Posted


      As you under a gastro, do they do more comprehensive LFTs?

      If so, can I get them at my GP?

      Sorry for asking but Ive just had a panic attack.  I think the stress of not knowing 100%, just being told Im ok through my bloods is starting to affect my mental health.

      May I ask, were all bloods OK for you?  Your full blood count and kidney function too?

      Lizzie x

    • Posted

      Sorry me again.

      My GP said I show no indication of ALD.

      My AST was 13 and he said if I had a problem, the AST would be higher than the ALT.


    • Posted

      LFT done at your GP, are normally blood taken by the nurse and sent to the local hospital to be tested, unless it is a special test, like I had one for liver cancer (tumour marker) done at the hospital and that had to be sent away.

      They all seem to use a fairly standard sheet, but a GP will usually tick less of the tests. A gastro specialises and therefore by the time you see him, it is generally because there is something wrong with you and he is looking at it in more depth.

      They are eight boxes to tick in the haematology section, plus an any other tests box, in biochemistry, again eight boxes plus an any other tests box, and five in immunology plus a box, although that tends to be slightly different. I've just had 13 different tests done.

      No my bloods aren't all okay, but then I knew that anyway. My platelet count was 115 end of March, it may be better now, but it is certainly better than the 75 it was two years ago.

      I think you are panicking too much. The question by the OP was, that although she had had the tests done, she still had some pain, does not have a gallbladder and has been told that she may have a fatty liver. Therefore does the test she has had, 100% rule out any problems and the answer to that is no.

      In her case, it may be wise to has for a liver scan, as a fatty liver is the stage before fibrosis, and left untreated, that is what it leads to. And fibrosis can lead to cirhosis if it continues to be left untreated. So in her case the GP has indicated that there may be a problem and the OP based on that info, may want to push for a scan.

      Unless I have missed one, I don't see anything in your posts that should have you worried. I am sorry if any of my posts, have led you to believe you may have something wrong with yourself.

    • Posted


      Thank you for your reply.

      Please don't aplogise, your posts are very informative.

      I do worry about myself as I have been drinking a bottle of wine a night for 20 years, only stopping for a year at a time during my 3 pregnancies.

      I just cannot believe I do not have anything wrong after all that time.

      Im going back to my GP tomorrow and see what he says.


      Liz x

    • Posted

      By my posts is there a need for concern? I'm guessing so sad Pain scares me and is always an indicator of something. Today I had pain that went from 2" below sternum to back. sad

      Can the fatty liver cause some discomfort and can it and the fibrosis be turned around?

      I did read on another posting site where a gentleman said he turned his cirrhosis around and that his fibrouscan was clear. Not sure what med's he took etc. He did say cutting out drinking which reduced the inflammation was key.

    • Posted

      I need to fix the previous post he said....

      "His portal vein became fibrous and he cured his hep c and that the liver healed itself"

    • Posted

      I would want the fatty liver checked, but I see you are going in for a CT scan on Monday, so this will be a full abdomen scan of those organs anyway. So that should reveal the nature of anything worrying, if anthing.

      I have my abdomen ultrasound scan on Saturday, so kind of them to book me in the weekend, not.

    • Posted

      Thank you for the reply RHGB,

      I get a little freaked out by what's going on and get on highs and lows thinking of the blood test results. Was so hoping that a positive score cemented a positive outcome, but it's best to hear the truth. It would make sense to get the fatty liver (if I have one) checked out instead of hiding my head.

      I was reading posts where people have non alcoholic fatty liver disease too and wonder if they treat them both the same.

      Treat yourself out so that it works in conjunction with your tests, at least they wouldn't have cabbaged up a Saturday for nothing.

    • Posted

      Since ALD and NAFLD are caused by different things, the treatment is different.

      On a really base level, alcoholics would be told to stop drinking and NAFLD people would be told to lose weight. That is it at it's most simplistic level but you get the gist.

    • Posted


      Just to say I saw my GP today and we went through my blood tests.

      Everything was in range.  I checked my albumin level as I understand this goes down in liver disease.  The range was up to  50 and mine was 48.

      He did say I could have a scan if I wished.

      You know, someone bought my hubbie a six pack today.  He sat in front of me drinking and I didnt care!  I did sniff the bottle but i know I couldnt just have one sip, Id drink the whole damn lot.  It really smelt soooo good....

      Ill just stick to my bottled water.

      Regards, Liz x


    • Posted

      HI BB. What an amazing story with blood donation and grafted liver AND recovering!! Very uplifting. Robin

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