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Ask Dr. Dolamore

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Dear Dr Dolamore, my 8-year-old dog had a routine blood test and the liver value called ALT was elevated. It was repeated and is still high. My vet suggested some additional blood tests and said she needs an ultrasound and liver biopsy. What should I do? She is not acting sick.

Animals with liver disease can seem fine for a long time before they start to act sick. This is because the liver is an organ that has a large “reserve tank” so to speak. If the blood tests are abnormal on two separate occasions it is important to take the next step and determine why. An ultrasound will allow the doctor to see the liver and associated structures and permit a biopsy to be taken without surgery. There are many diseases that can be treated and cured with medication if the diagnosis is obtained in time. Don’t delay. Take your doctor’s advice and get the ultrasound.

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Dr. Dolamore sees patients at Buffalo Mountain Animal Hospital in Silverthorne and Frisco Animal Hospital.

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