6 Important Facts About Transaminitis and Liver Health



Transaminitis refers to elevated levels of liver enzymes called transaminases in the blood, which typically indicates some type of liver injury. The two main transaminases tested are:

ALT (alanine transaminase) levels are usually specifically associated with liver cell injury. High ALT often signals inflammation or damage to liver cells.

AST (aspartate transaminase) levels can rise due to liver damage but can also rise due to damage or inflammation in other organs, like the heart, muscles, kidneys, or red blood cells.

Common Causes of Transaminitis 

Some common causes of transaminitis include:

  • Viral infections like mononucleosis, hepatitis A, B, or C
  • Excess alcohol consumption
  • Certain medications and supplements
  • Autoimmune diseases that affect the liver
  • Fatty liver disease
  • Liver injury from toxins

Symptoms and Diagnosis 

To diagnose transaminitis, doctors will order blood tests checking ALT and AST levels. Additional testing like an abdominal ultrasound, CT scan or MRI may be used to visualize the liver and check for damage. 

Dangers of Untreated Transaminitis

If the underlying cause of transaminitis goes untreated, liver inflammation can silently worsen over time. Allowing transaminase levels to remain elevated poses risks like permanent liver scarring (cirrhosis), liver cancer, and liver failure. Catching it early and controlling inflammation is key to preventing permanent damage. That’s why doctors repeat blood tests over time to monitor enzymes.

Lifestyle Changes Can Improve Liver Health 

Making certain lifestyle changes may help reduce existing transaminitis while also promoting overall liver health. Limiting alcohol, maintaining healthy body weight, eating a nutritious diet, staying active, avoiding toxins, managing medications wisely, and controlling liver disease risk factors can all support liver function. Quitting smoking and limiting antioxidant supplements are also wise.

Medications Can Treat Underlying Conditions 

Bringing transaminase levels back to normal range requires treating any underlying condition causing inflammation. Doctors may prescribe medications targeting specific problems like autoimmune hepatitis, NAFLD, chronic viral hepatitis, etc. Medication adjustment may also be necessary if certain prescription drugs are causing enzyme elevations. Careful management can lower enzymes while protecting the liver over the long term. Follow healthcare provider recommendations and seek guidance before taking new medications or supplements.

Consult a Liver Specialist for Ongoing Care 

The best person to manage transaminitis and promote liver wellness is a hepatologist, a physician who specializes in the liver. They understand how to correctly diagnose enzyme abnormalities, identify causative factors, provide appropriate pharmaceutical therapy, and oversee long-term monitoring. Early referral to one of these dedicated specialists results in the best outcome.


Having elevated ALT and AST levels signals that a sensitive organ, your liver, needs attention. By recognizing common triggers, looking for symptoms, getting proper testing, making lifestyle improvements, taking medications as directed, and working closely with a hepatologist, people can control inflammation, limit liver damage, and support overall health. Keeping a close eye on transaminase levels provides vital insight into what’s happening inside the liver at any given time.


Q. Can you recover from high liver enzyme levels?

  1. Yes, in many cases elevated liver enzymes can return to normal if the underlying cause is successfully treated. Making healthy lifestyle changes can also aid recovery.

Q. How long do elevated liver enzymes last?

  1. There is no definite timeline, but enzymes may stay elevated for weeks to months if the source of inflammation persists. Quickly addressing the root problem helps resolve transaminitis sooner.

Q. Is there a natural treatment for high liver enzymes?

  1. Dietary changes, exercise, stress reduction, herbal supplements like milk thistle, and a healthy lifestyle can all support liver health naturally after consulting your doctor. But medical treatment is still vital for the underlying disorder causing enzyme elevations.

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