GOT (glutamic oxaloacetic transaminase) or AST (aspartate aminotransferase)
It is an enzyme involved in the metabolism of amino acids. It occurs mainly in the liver and heart but is also found in the brain and kidneys. It is tested together with the enzyme GPT to evaluate the pathological process. It is normally present in small amounts in the blood, but in the case of organ damage, this level increases significantly.
What does the test show?
The test is used to show the extent of liver damage.
In which cases is it recommended to perform the test?
Your doctor may order the test as part of a routine laboratory test along with other items of liver function and if they think you have symptoms of liver damage. Such symptoms may include:
- constant feeling of tiredness
- loss of appetite or indigestion
- changes in the colour of urine and faeces
What sample is needed for the test?
A blood sample taken from a vein is needed for the test.
What can the result indicate?
The following liver-related causes may be behind the increase in GOT levels:
- Malignant tumour of the liver
- Inhalation of toxic substances (e.g. organic solvents)
- Viral hepatitis
- Chronic hepatocyte damage
- Consequences of taking certain medicines (e.g. cholesterol-lowering, contraceptive pill)
What to do after the test?
The test alone cannot diagnose any disease, and in all cases consult an internist or haematologist to determine the exact diagnosis and required therapy.