What is an SGOT test?
The SGOT test is a blood test used to evaluate the liver. It detects serum glutamic-oxaloacetic transaminase, one of the liver enzymes. This enzyme is now commonly known as AST (aspartate aminotransferase). SGOT (or AST) test determines the amount of the liver enzyme in the blood.
Why is it used?
SGOT test may be done to assist your doctor in diagnosing liver damage or illness. When liver cells are destroyed, SGOT seeps into the bloodstream, boosting the quantity of this enzyme in the blood.
The test may be used to assess liver health in people already known to have liver-related disorders, such as hepatitis C.
SGOT can be present in your kidneys, muscles, heart, and brain, among other places. If any of these locations is injured, your SGOT levels may be elevated. For example, if you've had a heart attack or a muscular injury, your levels may be elevated.
Because SGOT is found throughout the body, an ALT test is included as part of the liver profile. The other critical liver enzyme is ALT. It is detected in higher amounts in the liver than SGOT. An ALT test is frequently a better predictor of probable liver damage.
How to prepare for an SGOT test
The SGOT test is a normal blood test. It does not require any special preparation. Still, there are a couple of steps you can take to make the process easier.
Avoid taking any over-the-counter medications, like acetaminophen (Tylenol), prior to the test. If you do take them, make sure to notify your doctor. Before the test, inform your doctor about all of the drugs you're taking so that they can account for them when reviewing the findings.
Furthermore, drink lots of water the night before the testing. Keeping hydrated can help your technician draw your blood more easily. Make sure you're wearing comfortable clothing that allows the technician to readily take blood from your forearm - preferably up to the elbow.
What happens during the SGOT test?
During the test the technician will wrap an elastic band around your arm and look for a healthy vein to utilize. They will then disinfect the region before drawing blood from the vein using a needle.
The blood will be drawn into a tiny vial in less than a minute. They'll then apply gauze to the area briefly before removing the elastic band and placing a bandage on top. You might have a little bruise but it goes away soon.
What are the risks of the SGOT test?
Having an SGOT test has no risks. Ensure you're well-hydrated the night before to avoid feeling light-headed or dizzy.
What does the findings imply?
If your SGOT test results are high, it implies that one of the organs or muscles harboring the enzyme has been damaged. This includes your liver, as well as your muscles, heart, brain, and kidneys. Your doctor may request more testing to rule out other possibilities.
An SGOT test's normal range is between 8 and 40 units per liter of serum. In general, men may have greater levels of AST in their blood. A score of more than 50 for males and 45 for women is considered high and may indicate harm.
The typical ranges may differ based on the technology utilized by the lab. The precise range of the lab will be indicated in the findings report.
Very high AST or ALT readings are indicative of diseases that cause serious liver damage. Here are some of the conditions:
- Acute viral hepatitis A or hepatitis B
- The collapse of the circulatory system
- Extensive liver damage caused by toxins, including an overdose of OTC medications like acetaminophen.
What to Expect Following the Test?
If your SGOT test results are uncertain, your doctor may recommend further testing. If they are specifically looking at your liver function or screening for liver damage, they may additionally request the following:
- Coagulation panel: This test assesses the capacity of your blood to clot and the function of clotting-factor proteins generated in the liver.
- Bilirubin testing: Bilirubin is a chemical and a byproduct of the liver's regular breakdown of red blood cells. It is usually excreted as bile.
- Glucose test: A malfunctioning liver might result in abnormally low glucose levels.
- Platelet count: A low platelet count may be indicative of liver illness.
All of these tests are blood tests that may be conducted as part of a full blood panel test (CBP). If your high AST levels are suspected to be caused by other organs or muscles, your doctor may request additional tests to determine the problem, such as a liver ultrasound.