Liver Function Blood Test, from our experts to you.Dr Sam Rodgers MBBS, MRCGP
Chief Medical Officermeet our doctors
What is the role of the liver?
What is a Liver Function Blood Test?
Our Liver Blood Test is a liver function test that looks at liver enzymes, such as gamma GT (GGT) and alanine transferase (ALT), to indicate how well your liver is functioning and whether it’s showing signs of inflammation. In its early stages, liver damage is usually reversible, which is why it’s important to spot signs of liver damage early.
What causes liver disease?
Limitations of the test
Some liver biomarkers can also be abnormal in other conditions. For example, alkaline phosphatase (ALP) may be raised in bone-related conditions.
How to prepare for your test?
Frequently asked questions
Blood tests that include liver biomarkers (such as GGT and ALP) investigate your liver health. These liver tests can pick up later-stage liver disease. However, liver inflammation isn’t always detectable in a blood test, especially in the early stages of liver damage.
Can I find out if I have liver problems from a blood test?
Liver blood tests help determine whether your lifestyle is impacting your liver function and help to investigate the cause of symptoms such as jaundice. Our Liver Blood Test can be used as a screening tool if you’re at higher risk of developing liver damage (for instance, if you're a heavy drinker or overweight). It can also help you track and monitor changes if you’ve received abnormal liver blood results in the past.
Why do I need a liver function blood test?
No, fasting is not usually required before our standard Liver Blood Test. However, you may be advised to fast if your test is taken alongside other biomarkers such as blood glucose, iron, or cholesterol levels.
Do I have to fast for a liver test?
Yes, you can take our Liver Blood Test at home using our finger-prick blood test kit. We’ll send you everything you need to check your liver function at home, including clear instructions and a pre-paid return envelope. Alternatively, you can have your blood sample taken at one of our convenient nationwide partner clinics at a time that suits you.
Can I take a liver function test at home?
You can check your liver function with our finger-prick blood test kit. Our at-home liver test includes a full lab analysis of your blood sample. You can access your results on your MyMedichecks dashboard, alongside doctor’s advice to help you take action to improve your health and wellbeing.
How can I check my liver function at home?
How to keep your liver healthy
Exercise and a well-balanced diet are the best ways to help maintain good health and lower your chances of liver issues, such as non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). Read more about ways to keep your liver healthy.
Am I at risk of fatty liver disease?
You’re more at risk of fatty liver disease if you:
• Are over 50
• Are overweight or obese
• Regularly drink alcohol
• Have type 2 diabetes
• Have an underactive thyroid
• Have high blood pressure
• Have high cholesterol
Symptoms of liver disease
Most types of liver disease don’t have noticeable signs and symptoms in the early stages. You may want to get a liver test if you feel you’re at risk of liver disease.
Signs and symptoms of liver disease can include:
• Yellow skin and whites of the eyes (jaundice)
• Feeling or being sick
• Loss of appetite
• Feeling very tired and weak all the time
• Itchy skin
Liver Blood Test results explained
Our Liver Blood Test assesses the levels of proteins and other substances made by the liver to make sure they’re normal. Key biomarkers include ALT, ALP, GGT, and bilirubin.
ALT levels increase when liver cells are damaged, which helps to detect inflammation or to assess liver scarring (cirrhosis). GGT is a potential indicator of alcohol intake or fatty liver disease.
ALP and bilirubin are particularly useful for detecting obstructions in the liver. Their levels may be raised with gallstones or other diseases that block the bile duct.
Read more about liver biomarkers in our blogs on ALP, GGT, albumin, and bilirubin.