Liver function tests high.... I don't drink alcohol though

Anthonyd Member Posts: 2
edited 20. Dec 2019, 12:14 in Living with arthritis
Hi all,
I'm new to the group, but had an RA diagnosis for the last couple of years. I'm on biologic and methotrexate and always have moderately raised liver function tests. However, my Alt is double the top range...... But I haven't drunk alcohol in 20 months (very strictly and no deviation at all).

Anyone else any experience of raised ALT and are t-total. I have notified my treating team but it troubles me in the meantime as to whether this is unusual.




  • moderator
    moderator Moderator Posts: 3,640
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Anthonyd and welcome to the forum, good to have you with us.

    ALT levels can be raised in autoimmune disorders without alcohol consumption. There are also other factors that can affect ALT levels though, diet and some medication can - including paracetamol. Trying to remember from my own experience of raised ALT levels (with minimal alcohol consumption), I believe that an elevation of double the normal range is only considered fairly mildly elevated, as elevations can go far higher than this. Definitely something to discuss with your medical team to get proper advice on this though. Perhaps others will be along with their own experience to share too.

    Best wishes,

  • frogmorton
    frogmorton Member Posts: 27,485
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Don't blame yourself Anthony

    It's not that you are a raging drinker! As Ann says lots of meds can raise our ALT including simple paracetamol.

    I'm pretty sure this is not unusual.

    I did a 'search' on here and got all these

    Hope it helps

    Toni x
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    My LTA readings went bananas in under a month (from 26 to over 600) thanks to a biologic med, no meth and no alcohol. At other times they have been more than good (below 18) with a high alcohol intake: I am now virtually 'dry' and they are borderline at around 50. Go figure.

    Every body processes toxins differently without bringing the immuno-suppressant meds into the equation. One of the benefits of our monitoring is that these issues are highlighted before they become serious so action can be taken.

    I inject both my biologic and my meth, do you? DD
  • Lupine
    Lupine Member Posts: 1
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I'm currently being investigated for this as well and also rarely drink. I've been on several DMARDs over the years and on a biologic for the last 6 or so and suddenly, a year and a half ago, it raised to the 140 mark. I've had 3 liver scans, so far, and am due to have a liver fibrosis scan. Apparently my liver is very large. In total, I take over 16 different drugs plus vitamins etc which I am deficient in. The leaning is is that the raised liver ALT is caused by all those drugs. Not such a surprise but nobody has told me what can be done to put it right other than my heptologist said that the current line of thinking is to consume 1 unit of alcohol a day. Say what???
  • moderator
    moderator Moderator Posts: 3,640
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Lupine, welcome to the forum.

    Thank you for sharing your own experience on this thread and I am sorry to hear you have also been having trouble with your liver readings.

    Please feel free to join in any of the forums here. All our members and moderators are impacted by arthritis in some way and are a great source of support.

    Take care,
  • trepolpen
    trepolpen Member Posts: 504
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    hi Anthonyd , welcome to the forum , I was on methotrexate for 20 years , in the yearly years my ALT was 175 on 1 folic acid tablet a week , they stopped it for a year or so & then put me on 6 tablets & I was fine with normal ALT , dont know what you are on but talk to them about increasing your folic acid
  • trepolpen
    trepolpen Member Posts: 504
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    hi Lupine , welcome to the forum , I would leave alcohol off altogether , I was on methotrexate for 20 years & they done a liver fibrosis scan which was high & stopped the drug , (my ALT was normal) take the medical advice but taking high dose folic acid will help your ALT but will all depend on your scan

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