Researchers at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas tested patients who are part of the nationwide Acute Liver Study Group and found the new method 100-percent accurate in patients previously known to have overdosed on acetaminophen.
The test, developed at the University of Arkansas, returned no positive results in samples from control-group patients known to have liver damage from other causes or in patients with acetaminophen overdose without liver damage, according to Dr. William Lee, professor of internal medicine, who leads the Clinical Center for Liver Diseases.
"This test is really the smoking gun," said Lee.
"Acetaminophen is the most common cause of acute liver failure and we've been concerned about whether we're identifying all the cases that have it."
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