Slightly elevated ALT/AST: talk me off the cliff
First time I've been terrified in a long time, but I guess it comes with the fear of recurrence territory.
I'm weeping, not sleeping, having nightmares. I have a telemed appt tomorrow with my new oncologist (I've only seen him once before in November for a check up-everything was fine-all labs normal, nothing to worry about). I don't know him very well yet. My old oncologist retired in Feb. 19, and she was with me from the beginning in Sept. 11. Needless to say, we had a great relationship.
This past Tuesday I got my labs drawn, and didn't think anything of it, till I looked at them-and saw my ALT/AST levels slightly elevated-just out of normal range (ALT 57-ULN is 46-AST 46-ULN 41). All the rest of my values (albumin, bili, globulin, globulin ratio, ALP, protein) are within normal range.
I will freely admit that I have generalized anxiety disorder, greatly exacerbated by Covid lockdown. I have a scaffolding in place that I've built for years to healthily manage my anxiety: yoga classes multiple times a week, spending time with my yoga and work communities, teaching my wonderful university students, hanging with my colleagues, going to the gym every week and sitting in the spa after a workout. I also live within reach of Sedona and Grand Canyon, and go there a lot to hike and "breathe". You see where this is going-all those are closed off to me, and my anxiety has been through the roof.
Needless to say, I've been drinking more wine than I normally do and apparently that is good for me these past six weeks of lockdown. I knew that I was drinking more but until I saw the results I had no idea. I did not think it would jump my liver enzyme values that much. I had the equivalent of one or two glasses of wine during the week before my labs-I cut down because I knew it could skew labs, but I was shocked, terrified, and embarrassed that it jumped my values that much.
I should say that my ALT/AST values have been great for years; the last time they were slightly elevated was 2014 when I came back from vacation and indulging, waited a week and then got a lab test. My MO at that time asked me if I had wine, and I said yes, and she laughed and said abstain and get tested in a week or two. ALT/AST returned to normal with that second test.
This time I am twice as terrified-could it be exacerbated by my overall anxiety and then lockdown? Do you think alcohol could skew results even though I had just a little the week before my labs? Can some weeks of overindulging cause values to be increased?
I don't need a lecture-I know what I did, and chalk it up to lockdown and increased anxiety, using alcohol to temporarily mitigate it more than what was good for me. I just need a bit of reassurance and some logic. My mind is in a very, very dark place right now.