Jun 30, 2003
What is the cause of elevated ALTs? Why do HEP+ people with lower ALTs sometimes have a more difficult time clearing virus? If ALT has no direct relationship to hepatic damage, why is "normalization" of ALT seen as a good thing in therapy?
| Response from Dr. Dieterich
Good question! ALT and AST are enzymes that are contained in liver cells. When those cells die, they release the enzymes into the blood and they are measured in a test. When more cells are dying there is usually a better immunne response to the virus resulting in more cell killing of infected cells. So people who have higher AST and ALT have better immune responses to the viruses. If the virus goes away then the enzymes will normalize because there will be nothing for the immune system to attack. However ALT has no relation to fibrosis or scarring in the liver which can lead to cirrhosis. Scar formation is unrelated to inflammation and is caused by other cells call stellate cells that can't be measured in the blood. If you understand this, you are way ahead of most doctors! DTD
Get Email Notifications When This Forum Updates or Subscribe With RSS
- Swollen Lymph Nodes After Oral Sex Form Sex Worker What Are The Chances Of HIV
- White Tongue After Insertive Oral Sex Worried I Have HIV
- Can I Get Genital Herpes If I Used A Condom?
- Can Steroids Cause Vaginal Bleeding?
- Can You Get Rid Of Gunnera The Std?
- How Long Does It Take For Symptoms From A Std To Show Up?
This forum is designed for educational purposes only, and experts are not rendering medical, mental health, legal or other professional advice or services. If you have or suspect you may have a medical, mental health, legal or other problem that requires advice, consult your own caregiver, attorney or other qualified professional.
Experts appearing on this page are independent and are solely responsible for editing and fact-checking their material. Neither TheBody.com nor any advertiser is the publisher or speaker of posted visitors' questions or the experts' material.