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Alcohol Liver Disease is a condition marked by a damaged liver due to years and years of alcohol abuse. Among all the conditions, liver cirrhosis is the most severe alcohol induced liver disorder. Fatigue, weight loss and decreased appetite are some of the apparent symptoms. Overconsumption of alcohol over a prolonged span of time can also lead to various skin conditions and causes heavy damage on the central nervous system. Liver function tests and liver biopsy are diagnostic methods of measuring the damage.
HOW IS ALCOHOLIC LIVER DISEASE DIAGNOSED?
Severe cases may render the liver permanently dysfunctional and thus the patient may require liver transplant.
Liver is the second most important organ in your body and liver problems can cause serious damage to your life. The main function of liver in your body is to filter the blood toxins, break the proteins and secretion of bile to help our body absorb fats. The over consumption of alcohol results in the damage to the liver and viral hepatitis is the main cause of damage. Over the years many people have lost their lives due to liver failure as acetaldehyde damages the liver. Acetaldehyde is the toxic material present in alcohol. Though your liver can repair the damage and is very good at regenerating, but the matter of fact that with three quarter of damage to your liver can still make it function properly. Long term consumption of alcohol can cause liver cirrhosis and it is the considered an end stage of liver disease.
The following are the factors that can increase the chances of liver disease
1. Gender- It must be noted by you that women have lesser power to metabolize alcohol than men and hence more susceptible to alcoholic liver disease. Alcohol can damage the liver function more in women
2. Hepatitis C- If you have history of hepatitis than you have more risks associated with alcohol related liver failure
3. Diet of alcoholics matter as they eat poorly which increase liver disease
4. Iron content overload
Alcohol liver disease has three major stages and those are:
1. Alcohol fatty liver- Heavy drinking can cause the accumulation of fatty acid in your liver. Fatty liver as it is called can make you experience weakness, abdominal pain, appetite loss and unwell feeling called malaise.
2. Liver cirrhosis- this is life threatening condition of liver failure and you must stop the consumption of alcohol and go to your health advisor. The damage due to liver cirrhosis is irreversible and longer you stay away from alcohol, the better will your liver function improve. You may also in other extreme cases need a liver transplant to survive. Around 10 -20 per cent of people develop liver cirrhosis due to consumption of alcohol.
In early stage of liver cirrhosis you will feel weak and lose weight. Pain in abdomen and loss of appetite are the other effects of liver cirrhosis.
In the final stages or end stage of liver cirrhosis you will experience hair loss, dark urine, walking problems and changes in personality.
There is another stage called alcohol hepatitis, in which there is inflammation of the liver which can be recovered if you abstain from drinking. In the case of alcohol hepatitis you will have to abstain from alcohol for years to avoid any liver problems.
The damage to liver is sometimes irreversible and can cause death. Lybrate gives you the ultimate chance to contact the best hepatologists who will give you the best consultation in the industry. Lybrate offers you the best medical practitioners related to liver problems and liver failure in Bhopal, Bhubaneswar, Chandigarh, Delhi, Faridabad. Subscribe to Lybrate to know more about cirrhosis and fatty liver.