Doctors for Alcoholic Liver Disease in Yattingudda, Hubli-Dharwad
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ALCOHOLIC LIVER DISEASE
Alcoholic liver disease or ALD is caused due to overconsumption of alcohol. It is a slowly progressing disease in which healthy liver tissue is replaced with scar tissue. As a result, the liver fails to function properly. Some of the common symptoms of alcohol liver disease include loss of appetite, fatigue, bruises, fluid retention, blood stained stool, fever, diarrhea, abdominal pain and itchy skin.
HOW IS ALCOHOLIC LIVER DISEASE DIAGNOSED?
The various tests done for the detection of ALD are: • Complete blood count (CBC) • Liver biopsy • Liver function tests • Coagulation studies • Abdominal CT scan • Blood tests for other causes of liver disease • Ultrasound of the abdomen
HOW IS ALCOHOLIC LIVER DISEASE TREATED?
Treatment includes medications such as vitamin K, water pills, antibiotics, endoscopic treatments, fluid removal from abdomen, TIPS, etc. Liver transplant at extreme cases of cirrhosis can be done.
DID YOU KNOW?
This disease affects 20% to 30% of heavy drinkers.
The liver is an organ sitting under your rib cage on the right side of the abdomen. It is an essential organ for digesting food and eliminating toxic substances from the body. Certain viruses and alcohol consumption can result in liver disease. Liver disease can also cause obesity in many people. Cirrhosis is a condition caused by liver damage which results in a life threatening condition, liver failure.
Any damage to the liver and its function due to excessive consumption of alcohol results in alcoholic liver disease. The liver is the most complicated organ after the brain. Some of the essential functions of liver are:
• Fighting infections and other diseases
• Filtering out blood toxins
• Storing energy
• Regulating blood cholesterol levels
• Producing hormones and proteins
Alcoholic liver disease has the following stages:
• Alcoholic fatty liver disease- Fatty acids accumulate in the blood due to excessive drinking. This is a stage having negligible symptoms which can be reversed if you abstain from drinking alcohol. The symptoms are nausea, weakness, loss of appetite and abdominal pain.
• Alcoholic hepatitis- this includes the inflammation of the liver which results from many years of excessive drinking. The symptoms include abdominal pain, nausea, tiredness, fever and jaundice. Quitting alcohol may help in reducing the symptoms.
• Cirrhosis- the liver gets scarred and loses its ability to function after it swells up. Cirrhosis is a life threatening stage which is irreversible and the symptoms can only be reduced to some extent by absolutely quitting drinking. Symptoms involve blotchy red palms, tiredness, loss of weight, itchy skin, insomnia, loss of appetite and abdominal pain.
Signs and symptoms of liver disease are as follows:
• Yellowish skin and eyes (jaundice)
• Abdominal pain
• Abdominal inflammation
• Dark urine colour
• Chronic fatigue
• Loss of appetite
• Swelling in the legs and ankles
Alcoholic liver disease occurs after several years of alcohol overconsumption. Liver Cirrhosis and scarring develops over time and cirrhosis is the last stage of liver disease. However not all drinkers get the disease. It can also be caused due to no alcohol consumption. Certain factors also increase the risk factors of liver disease. They are:
• Excessive alcohol consumption
• Using shared needles for injecting drugs
• Any kind of tattoos
• High levels of triglycerides in the blood
The treatment of liver disease includes the following:
Change in lifestyle
• Reducing the consumption of alcohol
• Eating healthy less in salts
• Vaccination for various diseases like influenza, hepatitis A, hepatitis B is recommended
• Water pills (diuretics) can be taken to get rid of body fluids build up
• Vitamin k to prevent excessive blood loss
• Antibiotics for infection
Other treatments include a liver transplant owing to complete liver failure.
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