An alkaline phosphatase (ALP) blood test is a laboratory test that measures the level of ALP in the blood. ALP is an enzyme that is found in various tissues throughout the body, including the liver, bile ducts, bone, and placenta. It helps to break down certain proteins and is important for the proper functioning of these tissues.
The ALP blood test is typically ordered as part of a liver panel or bone panel to assess liver or bone health and to help diagnose and monitor various medical conditions. A high level of ALP in the blood (elevated ALP) may indicate a problem with the liver, bile ducts, or bones, such as liver disease, bile duct obstruction, or bone disorders such as paget's disease or osteomalacia. A low level of ALP in the blood (decreased ALP) may be due to certain medications or malnutrition.
The test is usually performed on a sample of blood that is drawn from a vein in the arm.
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