Impaired hepatocellular integrity during general anaesthesia, as assessed by measurement of plasma glutathione S-transferase

A J Hussey, J Howie, L G Allan, G Drummond, J D Hayes, G J Beckett

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The measurement of plasma glutathione S-transferase (GST) concentrations have been used to assess the changes in hepatocellular integrity which occur following general anaesthesia. Of 20 selected patients, who received halothane for minor urological procedures, 16 showed a small transient rise in GST between 1 h and 3 h after anaesthesia. Similar changes were also observed in 8 consecutive patients who received halothane for various operative procedures. In 3 of these 28 patients a marked secondary rise in plasma GST was observed 24 h after anaesthesia. No significant changes in ALT were observed in either of the groups of patients. These data indicate two possible phases of hepatotoxicity following halothane administration which results in a transient impairment in hepatocellular integrity in the majority of patients who undergo anaesthesia with this agent.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-28
Number of pages10
JournalClinica Chimica Acta
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 30 Nov 1986



  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Alanine Transaminase/blood
  • Chemical and Drug Induced Liver Injury
  • Female
  • Glutathione Transferase/blood
  • Halothane/adverse effects
  • Humans
  • Isoenzymes/blood
  • Liver Diseases/enzymology
  • Liver Function Tests
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Postoperative Period

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