Purposes Of Doing SGOT Test

Serum Glutamic-Oxaloacetic Transaminase(SGOT) is an enzyme primarily found in the liver. They are also found in the brain, kidneys, heart, and muscles. Another name for this enzyme is Aspartate Aminotransferase(AST). The levels of SGOT are generally low in a person. If the liver cells or cells in any other SGOT-containing organ of your body suffer damage, extra levels of SGOT are released in the blood, causing the levels to rise. 

What is SGOT test? This test is part of the liver profile, which measures the level of the SGOT enzyme in the blood and, based on it, determines how the liver is functioning. For further details on what is SGOT test, click on the following link:

Why an SGOT Test is Needed

What is SGOT test prescribed for? It helps a doctor detect or assess any damage or infection in the liver, along with other liver tests. The SGOT enzyme is released in the blood when liver cells get damaged, thus increasing its levels in the blood from the normal range. This deviation is caught in the test reports. For a person with already some liver condition like Hepatitis C, the test can help the doctors to study the activities of the liver to determine the next course of treatment. 

The brain, heart, kidneys, and muscles also contain SGOT enzymes. So cell damage in any of these parts will release more SGOT in the blood. For example, after a heart attack or muscle injury, the SGOT levels in the blood are higher than before. To cut down on problems concerning the liver only, doctors suggest another enzyme test called ALT, which is more specific to the liver. If both ALT and AST levels are high, it indicates a certain problem in the liver. If only AST is high, it may indicate a problem in some other part of the body. 

The common question then is – What is SGOT used for? It is used for screening, diagnosis, and monitoring purposes when the concerned person :

  1. If you have risk factors related to the liver, like family history, diabetes, obesity, or metabolic syndrome
  2. Shows symptoms of a liver problem like fatigue, stomach pain, jaundice, swelling in legs and ankles, bruises, a swollen belly, or excessive weight loss. 
  3. Is under treatment for liver disease.
  4. Have contracted Hepatitis 
  5. Has a history of excess alcohol intake. 
  6. Suffered from non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. 

What Do the Results Mean?

The normal range for SGOT in children and adults is as follows:

  • Children: 10-40 IU/L
  • Adults: 8-45 U/L. Men generally have a slightly higher content of SGOT in the blood. Above 50 for men and above 45 for women are considered to be high levels of SGOT. 

High levels of SGOT enzyme in the blood can indicate conditions like:

  1. Chronic Hepatitis 
  2. Cholestasis is a decrease in bile flow. 
  3. Liver Cirrhosis
  4. Liver cancers
  5. Damage in any other part like the heart, brain, kidney, or muscles. 

If the blood contains exceptionally high levels of SGOT in the blood, it can be due to severe damage to the liver like:

  1. Acute viral Hepatitis A or Hepatitis B. 
  2. Acute liver damage due to toxins or overdose of OTC medications like acetaminophen
  3. Collapse or shock of the circulatory system. 

Low levels of SGOT enzyme in the blood can also be an effect of some problems like:

  1. Kidney or liver disease
  2. Cirrhosis
  3. Vitamin B6 deficiency
  4. Autoimmune Conditions
  5. Genetic Conditions
  6. Cancer

We hope we have been able to explain what is SGOT test needed for and how it helps to assess a liver condition. High or low levels of SGOT don’t always occur due to damage in the body. It may just be a result of age, gender, race, or certain other conditions not implying any matter of concern. So you must consult your doctor about the necessary treatment required. 


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