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Have elevated liver enzymes. Diagnosed herniated naval. Could have damaged liver from strenuous lifting?

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Practicing since : 2002
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Elevated Liver Enzymes. On Blood Work (Jun 2o13)

Male / 45
Height: 5'7" or 5'8"
Weight: 227
~ Do not Drink or Smoke ~

Family History of Health Problems: None
Recent diagnosis: Dr. said I had a herniated naval. I can only guess this was the result of my weight training (2) yrs. ago...never really thought about it. But, from the strenuous lifting ... would it be possible I could've damaged (torn) my liver from strenuous lifting?
*** I am under a great deal of stress from legal issues at this time....which doesn't help this situation either.

Exercise: I used to run on my Treadmill (2) miles / day but since I hyper-extended my ankle last's been a "slow" process getting back in the routine. I normally weigh about 195-2oo lbs.
My target weight loss is to get under 19o lbs.

Posted Mon, 15 Jul 2013 in Liver and Gall Bladder
Answered by Dr. Robert Galamaga 21 minutes later
Hello and thanks for the query,

The heavy lifting certainly did not affect your liver.

Regarding the hernia - this is what we refer to as an umbilical hernbia. This happens with strenuous lifting and a portion of the abdominal wall muscle allows for some of the intestines laying behind it to push through. Most of the time this can be monitored but if it becomes large or uncomfortble a surgical consultation would be indicated.

You have a very mild elevation of your liver enzymes. This can be caused by a number of things including viral infections or by carrying excess weight. You may have mild fatty changes of the liver related to your weight and this can be reduced wity slow and gradual weight loss of 20-25 pounds. It would be reasonable for your doctor to check a hepatitis panel as well - most likely will be negative but reasonable to consider.

Lastly - decrease alcohol and tylenol intake for the time being. You might have the lab rechecked in 6 to 8 weeks.

Thanks again for the query,


Dr. Galamaga
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Have elevated liver enzymes. Diagnosed herniated naval. Could have damaged liver from strenuous lifting? 40 minutes later
Hey "Doc"

Regarding the (umbilical) hernia - Re: strenuous lifting and a portion of the abdominal wall muscle allows for some of the intestines laying behind it to push through. This makes sense since I was straining for some of the lifting...but it never really bothered me. I guess I'll start doing sit ups to strengthen my abdominal wall (again). I was told it can simply be corrected with sewing it back or removing the damaged umbilical area). The Dr. said she'd keep an eye on it and if it bother's me...let her know and she'd send me in for Consult.

Yes...I know I need to lose weight. (An extra (2o) lbs gone would help immensely! Last time I was on my treadmill I lost (2o) lbs. and I cut out ALL the Carb's & sodas (Mtn. Dew was my "addiction"). I loaded up on Protein, fruits and veg's. I have a bad habit of snacking "after dinner" ... so I resorted to fruits, nuts or protein shake...or chew crushed ice to get me full. After I reviewed the Calories Mt. Dew had in it...that was it...Good Bye Mt. Dew. Then I resorted to Diet Mtn. Dew.. but realizing the Diet Mtn. Dew was just as bad with loaded saccharin and Aspartame. Have you reviewed the medical reports on Aspartame? Good works just like formaldehyde "pickling" your liver and other organs. I told my wife she needed to get off the Diet Drinks...then her Dr. said..."If you don't take off the weight...I'm putting you on hypothyroidism and her retaining she dropped (2o) lbs. of water weight in (4) wks. AND, she cut out all the starches & carbs also.

I don't drink (Alcohol) problem there. Tylenol? I seldom use that but take Naprocin (as needed). Funny you should say "Fatty Liver" visit (last year) the Dr. said the same thing which is a result of weight gain. He said I should take off about (2o) lbs. With my body (frame) size...I can do that in (3o) days by exercise and cutting out the starches & carbs. That would take me to (2o7) and a few inches off my waist.

Re: Hepatitis....with my (healthy) family (Medical) history...and myself ..."IF" I had "Hep" where would it come from? Can Animals carry Hep. ?
Our family has (2) Dogs, (4) cats and (8) parakeets. We've rescued (2) wild birds and have had frogs also.

In the "HEP" family (Hep. A, B, C)....which is most common...and can either HEP. be treated or cured ?

Thanks for your assistance Doc....look forward hearing from you.
Answered by Dr. Robert Galamaga 9 hours later
Hello and thanks for the followup,

You are correct in understanding how umbilical hernias are repaired - often a minor surgery which may not require an overnight in the hospital. These typically will not completely regress without surgery. Strengthening your core muscles would be great for your overall health in relation to this.

As far as weight loss - no emergency. Try and focus on slow and meaningful loss. Set a goal for example of 2-3 pounds per week which is reasonable with some adjustment in diet and exercise. Then in a few months you can focus on maintenance.

As for the hepatitis - again unlikely - hep B and C might cause liver function abnormalities. Risk factors include IV drug use or contact with blood of other infected individuals. Again this is highly unlikely and just a thought for sake of completeness. You wouldnt pick this up from an animal.

I think some slow and gradual weight loss will lead to improvement of the liver enzymes - time will tell -as will a followup liver function panel in 3-6 months.

Thanks again for sharing your health concerns,

Dr. Galamaga
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Have elevated liver enzymes. Diagnosed herniated naval. Could have damaged liver from strenuous lifting? 17 minutes later
In ref. to my Weight Loss....I don't do anything drastic.
The last time I cut out 95% of my Carbs, Sugar and Calories....ate more protein, fruits and veg's...and exercised (5) to (6) days per week on rotating weeks.
I averaged about (5) lbs. loss every week. It wasn't hard losing the (2o) lbs. and I avoid "crash dieting". I have a friend that did "fasting" and I told her that was very unhealthy and extremely XXXXXXX because she's not nourishing her body and only eating (2x) per day. NOT a good way to lose weight since your body "stores fat" when you fast.

We were derived from "Caveman" times and the body was trained to eat big meals because cavemen didn't know when they'd see food again (let's face it...wolly mammoths couldn't run very fast...but cavemen had to walk for miles before "scoring the big kill". So the "eat until you're bloated" causes the body to store more fat without proper exercise.

When the Dr. mentioned testing for Hep. my heart went through my chest and more stress than I needed. Can stress cause the liver enzymes to elevate also? I've been under a tremendous amount of stress since last year dealing with legal matters and with some weight gain probably doesn't help either.

What are the treatment for Hep. B & C ?

Answered by Dr. Robert Galamaga 1 hour later
Hello again,

Just to reiterate - it is extremely unlikely that you have a viral hepatitis. Hepatologists do have some antiviral treatments which are effective particularly for Hep C. Try not to worry or focus on this as again it is highly unlikely to be an issue in your case.

It is theoretically possible that stress could cause changes in liver enzyme levels although I do not think this has been published in the literature. It would be quite difficult to prove this cause and effect.

I think we are in agreement on a strategy for you in the near term. In confident you're on your way to excellent health. For all the stress you are dealing with now try to focus on remaining positive and optimistic knowing certainly that a day will come when you can enjoy having minimal stress in your life.


Dr Galamaga
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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