Alcoholic Liver Disease

How is Alcoholic Liver Disease Diagnosed?

Because there is no specific test that can accurately diagnose alcoholic liver disease, a combination of tests are performed such as the following:

  • Medical history and physical examination – The patient will answer questions regarding lifestyle habits and health history, including alcohol use, and conduct a physical exam
  • Blood tests – These check for high levels of certain liver related enzymes
  • Ultrasound – This test may reveal an enlarged liver or other liver problems
  • Liver biopsy – A small tissue sample is removed from the liver using a long thin needle and then examined under a microscope

American Liver Foundation “Alcoholic Liver Disease” http://www.liverfoundation.org/abouttheliver/info/alcohol/. Retrieved March 4, 2011

Mayo Clinic “Alcoholic Hepatitis”http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/alcoholic-hepatitis/DS00785. Retrieved March 4, 2011

Medline Plus “Alcoholic Liver Disease” http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000281.htm. Retrieved March 4, 2011

Palmer, M.D., Melissa. Dr. Melissa Palmer’s Guide to Hepatitis & Liver Disease. New York: Avery Trade, 2004.

Worman, MD Howard J. The Liver Disorders and Hepatitis Sourcebook. McGraw-Hill, 2006