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Purpose of the test:
Evaluates liver function
Helps monitor progression of severe liver disease and treatment effectiveness
Diagnoses possibility of impending or established liver failure

Patient preparation:
Don't eat any food or drink any liquid for at least 12 hours before the test

Activity after test:
Liver disease may produce bleeding problems, so be sure bleeding stops at the site where blood was drawn. If bleeding continues, contact your doctor.
If plasma-ammonia levels are high, be aware of any signs indicating an impending or established hepatic coma.

Time before test results available:
2 to 3 days

Normal values:
Plasma-ammonia levels are less than 50mcg/dl

What "high" or "increased" may indicate:
Bleeding from the gastrointestinal tract
Congestive heart failure
Erythroblastosis fetalis
Reye's syndrome
Sever liver disease leading to hepatic coma

Taking these drugs may affect test results:
Ammonium salts

Other factors that may affect test results:
Portacaval shunt
If tourniquet is applied on the arm too long (over 1 minute), it may cause an inaccurate test result. Request another sample to ensure accuracy.

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