“The doctor asked whether he was sure that he had not taken anything else when he was sick? No acetaminophen? No herbs or supplements? The man was certain. Moreover, his labs were abnormal even before he took the antibiotics. The doctor hypothesized that the man’s liver had been a little inflamed from some minor injury — maybe a virus or other exposure — and the antibiotic, which is cleared through the liver, somehow added insult to injury.”
A few weeks before he got sick, he had blood tests for an application for life insurance. Days later, he heard from his doctor that his liver labs were a little off. There are enzymes in the liver that help with the organ’s work of cleansing the blood. When the liver is injured, these hardworking chemical assistants leak into the circulatory system. The levels of these enzymes, his doctor explained, were double what they should be.
Read more in the NY Times Magazine article by Lisa Sanders, M.D.: