The most common tests used in clinical practice include the serum aminotransferases, bilirubin, alkaline phosphatase, albumin, and prothrombin time. These are used to screen for the presence of liver infections (e.g. viral hepatitis), to monitor the severity of disease (e.g. cirrhosis), track progression of a disease (e.g. viral or alcohol hepatitis), to guide the efficacy of treatments and to identify possible side effects of medications.
Elevations in liver enzymes of alkaline aminotransferase (ALT), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alkaline phosphatase and bilirubin are markers of hepatocyte injury or biliary obstruction.
Albumin is a marker of impaired synthetic function, (Child-Turcotte-Pugh score).