Elevated ALT Etc.
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Thread: Elevated ALT Etc.

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    Top Of The Hill is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultElevated ALT Etc.

    Dee was into the Vet's last week to have a very small lump removed from her mammary area. Results came back and thankfully they were okay......various types of tissue, but all benign. She also had bloodwork done while there.....mainly to follow-up on a couple of slightly elevated results she had some months back. One of the tests (called a Spec cPL Add-on and I think to do with the pancreas) is now normal, but the other (ALT) has increased. I know that this is a liver enzyme. It was outside the normal range by a few points previously and this time it is up to 79 (with normal range being up to 60) My vet did stress that this wasn't terribly high, but he wants to do another blood test in two to three weeks to see if there is any change in the ALT number. If it has gone up then he says an u/s would be next......I think to check for any tiny masses that didn't show up on the x-rays (which she also had while in for the lump.) The x-rays were mainly for her hips (to see how they look at this point), but I guess he also decided to do/include her abdomen etc. All looked normal with no masses seen. The blood result also mentions mild numbers of acanthocytes and slight echinocytosis being present re her CBC/blood. The vet did go over it all with me, but I'll ask more when we go back in to get her stitches out. When I look these things up on-line it mentions cancers. Just wondering if anyone else has had any of these things mentioned on blood results? She has an excellent appetite, appears very healthy and no signs of any issues going on. TIA
    Last edited by Top Of The Hill; 04-17-2013 at 12:33 AM.

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    tammyhuffman is offline Senior Member
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    I don't know what the numbers mean but I just wanted to send prayers and good thoughts that all turns out ok.
    Tammy
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    Top Of The Hill is offline Senior Member
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    Thanks for replying Tammy and for the good thoughts.

    Nobody has ever had their dog's Liver Enzymes come back high? Her other liver enzymes were normal and I'm just wondering what could cause this.....in the lack of any obvious disease.

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    Snowco Labradors's Avatar
    Snowco Labradors is offline Senior Member
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    I have been there with AST elevated as well. US showed CAH. Here is my story and what I did to get my girl back in normal range. She has been holding her own for 3 1/2 years. She remains on vitamins for liver support.

    Search results for "chronic active hepatitis" | Hearty Pet Talkin' Tails Blog

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    Top Of The Hill is offline Senior Member
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    Hi Patty, thanks so much for posting your link re your experience. I just read it. So glad that your Miya is doing well.

    One thing has me a bit puzzled with regards to what is considered an elevated ALT...... I also posted about this in Lab Chat and had a response from another forum member that I believe said up to 80 was considered normal.....which would still put Dee in the normal range. I did a bit of checking on-line and seemed to find varying levels of what is considered normal for ALT (I guess depending on the lab that processes the blood), but they were all higher than the 60 than this particular laboratory considers the high end. Plus it seemed that really serious stuff was usually multiple times the top end of normal. Dee's was 79. At any rate it is somewhat higher than it was six months ago when it was only 62, so I suppose wise to recheck it. Her AST, ALP, GGT and Total Bilirubin are all normal......as are the rest of her blood results except for the mention of "slight acanthocytosis." Do you know anything about acanthocytes per chance?

    No masses seen per x-rays, but I gather if her ALT is up after the next round of bloodwork my vet will likely do an u/s to check for anything tiny. I keep wondering whether it could possibly be something simple.....like something she is eating/ingesting. (see my post in Lab Chat) It really seems like the level (at least at present) isn't significantly out of range and my vet did say that it wasn't all that high, but worth rechecking.
    Last edited by Top Of The Hill; 04-19-2013 at 03:43 PM.

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    Snowco Labradors's Avatar
    Snowco Labradors is offline Senior Member
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    I would go with the range that the lab processing the blood is using. Sorry I don't know about acanthocytosis

    I would be sure to fast (no food or water) prior to the next blood draw (if you did not on the last) to prevent any false elevations in organ function.

    If she had a meal prior to last draw it could be the reason for the slight elevation. It is not significantly high as your vet said. Miya was much higher so we went right for the US.

    Prayers the next draw has her in normal range.

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    Top Of The Hill is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snowco Labradors View Post
    I would go with the range that the lab processing the blood is using. Sorry I don't know about acanthocytosis

    I would be sure to fast (no food or water) prior to the next blood draw (if you did not on the last) to prevent any false elevations in organ function.

    If she had a meal prior to last draw it could be the reason for the slight elevation. It is not significantly high as your vet said. Miya was much higher so we went right for the US.

    Prayers the next draw has her in normal range.

    Thanks. She was fasted before the last blood draw (no food or water) because she was at the Vet's to have a small lump biopsied. I believe they drew the blood while she was sedated for the procedure, but my vet said that the sedation wouldn't make any significant difference to the result. I was hoping to talk to him a bit more today while in to have her stitch removed, but I didn't get to see him as they just took her through to the back to take it out. I wondered if licking herself after having any creams/sprays applied (which we use for her allergies) could affect the level. Anyway I have to take her back in a couple of weeks to have her blood done again and I guess we will see what's up then. There's also the "mild number of acanthocytes" mentioned on the results....which the pathologist noted "supports microvascular injury to the rbcs and advises to check spleen and liver." I guess I'll ask more about this after the next blood test results are back. At this point I'm not sure if any of this is something to be concerned about. Thanks for the good thoughts.

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    has she been on any NSAIDS recently or in the recent past? Rimadyl, etc. can cause liver elevations. I would not think her licking off topical ointment would cause the elevation but not knowing the ingredients I would check with the vet.

    Please keep us posted.

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    Top Of The Hill is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snowco Labradors View Post
    has she been on any NSAIDS recently or in the recent past? Rimadyl, etc. can cause liver elevations. I would not think her licking off topical ointment would cause the elevation but not knowing the ingredients I would check with the vet.

    Please keep us posted.
    No, she hasn't been on any NSAIDS that I can think of......unless she's had anything while at the Vet after a surgery/procedure. Actually she was on Metacam briefly after having an abscess in her mouth, but that's about 4 years ago. I think that is an NSAIDS. The cream that I use is a corticosteroid/anti-inflammatory/antibacterial/antifungal. It's not used daily......just when needed, so sometimes it might be used for a couple of days and then not for a couple of weeks or longer. We have also been using bitter apple to deter her chewing when we aren't home to watch her.....which isn't often. The bitter apple is mostly used when she has to go into the kennels and they might use it a few times a day.....and again that's not very often. She does lick at it after awhile though. Not exactly sure what's in it, but it was recommended by my vet. Before Christmas she had an ear infection and was on a few different things.....an antibiotic, Surolan Ear Drops and Vanectyl-P (the P standing for Prednisone). She was only on the a/b for a week and the Vanectyl P was a low dose. Aside from that she's had a few minor surgery's/procedures over the years and of course her spay surgery. I doubt my vet thinks the creams or bitter apple have anything to do with her ALT level being up. I just keep thinking that maybe it's something simple.....especially as it's really not elevated that much even by this particular labs reference range. Oh well, fingers crossed it will be down next time. I still need to ask him more about the other issue (acanthocytes), but we'll see how the next blood test goes first I guess. Thanks again for replying. I'll let you know how it goes in a few weeks.

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    Well the only other thing I can tell you is that steroid meds are not recommended for a dog with liver issues
    I went thru it, had no choice but to go that route for an unrelated issue and thankfully all was fine with a blood draw to check my girls liver.

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