Alkaline phosphatase is an enzyme that is majorly produced by the liver. It is also produced by the bones, placenta, bile ducts, kidneys and intestines, but to a lesser extent than it is produced in the liver. It exists in the body in different forms (isozymes) based on its origin. The ALP test is advised to measure the enzyme in the bloodstream.
Why is the test ordered?
An alkaline phosphatase test is ordered to detect the onset or the prevalence of a liver disease or any damage to it. The test is also taken to determine if any medication that can be potentially harmful to the liver is being taken. The test may also be ordered to monitor the progress of the treatment for Paget’s disease or Vitamin D deficiency.
When is the test recommended?
The test is recommended when an individual exhibits the signs and symptoms of a liver disorder, such as:
- Abdominal pain or swelling
- Loss of appetite
- Dark urine
How is the sample collected?
A blood sample is collected from a vein in the arm.