AST Test

What is AST test?

AST stands for Aspartate Transaminase, which is an enzyme found in the liver and other organs. It measures the level of AST in the body, which is an indicator of liver damage or disease. AST tests can determine if the liver is functioning correctly or if a person has a liver disorder.

Types of AST tests

There are two types of AST tests: the quantitative AST (qAST) and the qualitative AST (qDAST).
  • Quantitative AST (qAST) – measures the level of AST in the blood and is used to diagnose liver disease.
  • Qualitative AST (qDAST) – tests for the presence of specific enzymes in the blood, which are used to diagnose more specific types of liver diseases.

What is the Procedure for an AST Test?

The procedure for an AST test involves taking a sample of blood from the patient. The blood sample is then sent to a laboratory where it is analyzed for the presence of AST. The results are typically reported as to the amount of AST present in the blood sample.

What Types of Conditions Are Detected by an AST Test?

An AST test can help detect and diagnose a number of conditions, including:
  • Hepatitis
  • Cirrhosis
  • Drug toxicity
  • Liver cancer
  • Jaundice
  • Liver inflammation

What Are the Risks of an AST Test?

There are no significant risks associated with an AST test. The only potential risk is a minor risk of bruising and bleeding from the puncture site.

When Should You Have an AST Test?

An AST test is typically ordered when a doctor suspects a patient has a liver disorder or is at risk for one. Additionally, an AST test can be ordered prior to any prescribed medications that may affect the liver, such as certain antibiotics.

Preparing for an AST Test

Preparing for an AST test involves fasting for 8-12 hours prior to the test. It is important to follow your doctor’s instructions, as well as avoid alcohol for 24 hours prior to the test. Additionally, it may be necessary to avoid certain other medications prior to the test.

Why is an AST Test Important?

An AST test is important because it can help detect and diagnose a number of conditions related to the liver. Additionally, it can help monitor the progression of a condition or the effectiveness of treatments. It is important to follow up with any abnormal results and contact a healthcare provider immediately if any symptoms worsen.