Hepatic Encephalopathy is a medical condition that affects the brain. The main cause of Hepatic Encephalopathy is a chronic liver disease that affects your behaviour, speech, sleep and your movement. Symptoms are:
• Speaking or acting inappropriately
• Cranky behaviour
• Smelly or musty breath
• Difficulty in moving hands
• Slurred speech
• Sluggish movement
HOW IS HEPATIC ENCEPHALOPATHY DIAGNOSED?
The basic cause of this condition, as mentioned, is the failure of the liver to discharge some of its fluids, so the Gastroenterologist will first focus on knowing the condition of the liver and will want to know if the patient or those around him/her have noticed the changes in the behaviour. A blood test can give some indication.
HOW IS HEPATIC ENCEPHALOPATHY TREATED?
Treatment options for hepatic encephalopathy differ depending on the severity and underlying cause of the condition. Doctors advise people to limit how much meat and other animal protein they eat. Medications can also help slow the rate at which your blood absorbs toxins. In severe cases that cause difficulty breathing, a ventilator or oxygen delivered through a mask may be necessary. The ultimate treatment is to replace the damaged liver with a healthy donor liver.
DID YOU KNOW?
If not treated, the problem would just tend to aggravate eventually leading to future brain function complications - and in rare cases coma and death too.