Liver cirrhosis is a progressive disease in which scar tissue replaces healthy liver tissue. The liver can still function relatively normally in the early stages of cirrhosis. However, as the condition progresses, the liver becomes increasingly unable to perform its vital functions, such as filtering toxins from the blood and producing bile.
Cirrhosis of the liver can lead to several serious health complications, including liver failure, portal hypertension, and gastrointestinal bleeding. The most common symptoms of cirrhosis are fatigue, weakness, loss of appetite, weight loss, and abdominal pain. However, in its early stages, cirrhosis often has no symptoms.
There is no cure for liver cirrhosis, but treatment can help slow the disease’s progression and improve symptoms. Common treatment options include lifestyle changes, medications, and surgery. In addition, lifestyle changes such as avoiding alcohol and maintaining a healthy weight can help to reduce liver damage.
Medications such as steroids or immunosuppressants can help to reduce inflammation and slow the progression of the disease. In some cases, surgery may be necessary to remove damaged liver tissue or to transplant a healthy liver from a donor. Treatment for cirrhosis is essential for preventing further liver damage and improving quality of life. The most common causes of liver cirrhosis are listed below.
Chronic alcoholism is the most common cause of cirrhosis. It is a chronic condition characterized by the continued consumption of alcohol despite adverse consequences. Alcohol abuse damages the liver by causing fatty deposits in the organ. These deposits can lead to inflammation and scarring, eventually leading to cirrhosis.
Those suffering from alcoholism will often experience cravings for alcohol, and they may find it difficult to control their drinking. There are various ways to treat chronic alcoholism, depending on the severity of the condition. In some cases, detoxification and abstinence are necessary. However, managing drinking is a more realistic goal for many people with chronic alcoholism. This approach involves working with a health care provider to limit how much alcohol you can consume without experiencing withdrawal symptoms.
People who abuse alcohol are at a higher risk for cirrhosis if they have a history of liver disease, such as hepatitis C. As the disease progresses, they may develop jaundice, ascites, and portal hypertension.