FAQ - liver cirrhosis
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What is the prognosis for cirrhosis of the liver?


My girlfriend is 47 yrs. old and was diagnosed with liver failure do to alcohol. Her kidneys are functioning, although the spleen and colon are still inflamed. She is very jaundice and a lot of fluid in her abdomin. She has been moved from the hospital because there is nothing more they can do for her and transported to a nursing home. After a stay there she is suppose to be moved to Glenbeige. Nothing I have read tells me what her prognosise is. Does anyone have an answer?
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I am sorry to say that the prognosis appears to be poor-the jaundice and abdominal fluid is because her liver has failed-That is all the information i can give because I have not seen her or know the results of her tests.One thing is absolute -is that to stand any chance of improving at all -SHE MUST NOT DRINK-if she does?  (+ info)

Has anyone ever heard of someone who has never has a drink in their life having Cirrhosis of the liver?


I'm 16 and my doctors recently diagnosed me with cirrhosis of the liver which is something i thought you could only get from to much alcohol. Does anyone know how you can get this without alcohol? I've never had a drink before but my doctors say it looks like ive been drinking heavily for the last 20 years.
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Non-Alcoholic Steatohepatitis (NASH) is very common today. It is related to childhood obesity and is caused by a poor quality diet. The good news is that your liver can usually heal if you lose weight and eat a healthy diet.

Best wishes and good luck.

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Can you die suddenly from liver cirrhosis?


I've just found out that my best friend has died, apparently of cirrhosis of the liver. He was only 39. I hadn't talked to him for a few months, as we live halfway across the world from each other, but the last time I talked to him he sounded alright and did not mention anything to me about being ill. I know that he had been drinking quite excessively, but I had NO idea he was drinking as much as apparently he had. From what his sister has said, he called 911 on a Monday, vomiting blood and having breathing trouble, by Monday night he was considered brain dead and by Tuesday he had died. Could he have known how ill he was? He hated doctors, so I don't know if he'd seen one prior or not. How could he have died so suddenly? Surely, if he were so ill he were about to die, he would have been ill enough to have been hospitalised before it got so bad he called 911...? I'm left with too many unanswered questions, but I was just wondering if any of you out there know anything, thanks.
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yes, you absolutely can die suddenly from cirrhosis of the liver. What happens is the liver just fails suddenly from the disease. When the liver fails it affects every organ in the body. He may have known he was ill, but perhaps he thought he Wasn't that bad off. I'm sorry for you because I know it's painful losing someone you love.

alcohol causes more death than any other drug and people still do not recognize the seriousness of consuming large amounts of alcohol.  (+ info)

Do you think he has cirrhosis of the liver?


My dad, on a weekly basis, usually has, 21+ 1 litre bottles of cider, somethimes a 35cl bottle of whisky and occasionally wine. He is an alcoholic and i suggested he went for a liver scan, do you think he has cirrhosis of the liver?
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The only way to know for certain if there is any
liver damage is to have blood testing done.
The doctor checks the liver blood enzymes,
the liver functions tests, and the liver viral tests.
This will show if there is damage to the liver
cells, if the liver cells are able to do some of
the necessary functions of the liver, and if a
virus has entered the body and is using the
liver cells to replicate itself.

If a problem is caught early on...there is a chance
that the liver cells can heal and the problem will
be reversed. There are people walking around
with liver diseases and don't even know they
have them. The signs that first occur could be
tiredness and maybe flu like symptoms. This
could be mistaken for other things. The first
true sign is becoming Jaundice, but sometimes
this doesn't show up right away until someone
is in the advanced stages (in some people).
Jaundice is the yellowing of the whites of the
eyes and skin.

Just having this blood test done gives the doctor
alot of information about whether there is a problem.
Anyone who drinks, on a regular basis, should have
them done just to be sure. If the liver cells are
damaged to the point that they start to die off,
it can become an irreversible disease known
as Cirrhosis and the only cure then is to have a
liver transplant. Liver transplants costs
$300,000 and up.

Each patient is different. Some people are more
sensitive to alcohol than others are. In some, it
doesn't take much at all to cause damage and in
others, they can go all their lives without a problem.
It is always good to find out, just to be on the safe side.
Over consuming alcohol doesn't give the liver enough
time to process it and convert it to a non toxic form.
Drinking alcohol over long periods of time, can lead
to fat infiltration inside the liver. Either way, it can cause
damage to the liver cells.  (+ info)

Mom has cirrhosis of the liver need to know if shes taking the right medicine's?


My mom is 85 years of age she has cirrhosis’ of the liver, diabetes and high blood pressure. She use to be energetic now she is weak and tired all the time. Her doctor prescribed Onglyza, Amlodipine, metporolol, lirnopril.hctz, two of these say do not take if you have liver disease which mom has, need to know if this Doctor is doing right by my mom.
Thank You
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Your mother should be seeing either an gastroenterologist or hepatologist now. They should be working with her primary care doctor to be sure any medications she is taking is necessary and if any need to be changed because of the cirrhosis.
All drugs have side effects and warnings. The doctor has to weigh the pros and cons of any medications taken based on her medical history and her diseases. Sometimes the pros outweigh the cons of using a drug. Whatever doctor she is with, they should all know the drugs she is on, why she is on them, and be asked if they are necessary or if something else, that is less harmful, is available for her to take. This isn't something that can be done here...for it will depend on what her blood tests show, how far advanced in the disease she is, whether she is responding to treatment given and other things.
All liver patients are told not to take any medications that are not prescribed or approved of by their doctors. This includes over the counter, herbs, vitamins, minerals,
and supplements. That is because all medications go through the liver first, to be broken down, before going to the rest of the body.

In Cirrhosis, the patient is extremely tired. The body is trying to compensate for the liver functions declining because the liver cells have died off. The body is trying to keep homeostasis in other organs by compensating for the liver lack of function.

When the liver cells become damaged, the immune system of the body responds to this damage and causes inflammation to develop inside the liver which causes the liver to enlarge in size. When the inflammation continues on, the liver cells die
off and form scar tissue inside the liver that blocks the flow of blood through the liver on its way back to the heart and also blocks the flow of blood to the cells left, and they continue to die off...this is cirrhosis.

The liver is normally soft in texture and smooth, with inflammation it enlarges and becomes spongy. When the cells die off, it starts to shrink and become hard...the liver is dying. The blood that normally would flow through the liver, from the portal vein,
backs up and causes high pressure inside the portal vein (known as portal hypertension)..it also backs up into smaller vessels that may have weak spots and balloon outward and bleed. Any blood
in vomit or in the rectal area is an emergency.
The doctor can go in an band them right away to stop the bleeding. Because the blood backs up, it will also back up into the spleen and the spleen will enlarge in size. Her blood tests will show if her Red blood cells level or platelets are decreasing because of this. The Red blood cells is what carries the oxygen molecule around our bodies...lack of oxygen can also cause tiredness if the patient has anemia.
There is also the complication of Encephalopathy.
When our bodies uses protein...there is a byproduct produced from this...known as Ammonia. The liver normally takes this ammonia and converts it into urea
so the body can dispose of it. Now, since the liver isn't able to do this...this ammonia stays in the blood and goes pass the blood brain barrier and into the brain.
It causes confusion, disorientation, personality changes, sleep pattern changes, and tremors. The doctor can start the patient on medications to remove the ammonia known as Lactulose. It is important that the medication is taken, as the patient can eventually go into a coma because of it. The liver normally would handle all toxins in the body and make then into a non toxic form so the body would
dispose of them...but now they are in the blood and this can make a patient extremely itchy and more tired.
Patients can also develop a condition known as Ascites which is a build up of fluid in the abdominal area. This is because the liver isn't able to make a protein efficiently any more, known as Albumin. Albumin is what keeps the fluid inside our vessels. These fluids now seep out and collect here. The doctor can remove these fluid
with a procedure known as paracentesis. It will normally help the patient to breathe better, rest better, and relieve the pain of pressure on the other organs like the stomach that may make them not to want to eat. If the patient isn't eatting, it is best to ask the doctor what supplements she
can be given to keep her strength up.
Considering your mom is 85 years old. You might want to contact the Area of the AGing in your area. They give alot of help to people in this age group who are disabled.
If she wants continue care at home and the doctor thinks she may not live pass 6 months, you might ask him to sign forms so hospice care can be given to her at home.

I know how hard it is to try to be sure she is given the best care. She is fortunate to have someone that cares so much to help her through this. I'm going to give you links that will help explain more about cirrhosis and a link to a support group that are also for caregivers who take care of Cirrhosis patients. Just tell them you are a caregiver for one.
You can click on these links:
http://www.medicinenet.com/cirrhosis/article.htm
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/cirrhosis/DS00373
http://yourtotalhealth.ivillage.com/cirrhosis.html
http://www.uihealthcare.com/topics/medicaldepartments/internalmedicine/liverdisease/index.html
The support group is completely free. You can ask questions here, meet others who have cirrhosis, make friends, and see more links about the disease. Here is a link to the site if you think you might be interested:
http://health.dir.groups.yahoo.com/group/livercirrhosissupport/?v=1&t=directory&ch=web&pub=groups&sec=dir&slk=3
Best wishes to you and your mother  (+ info)

Do you know if Cirrhosis is the same as Liver Damage?


Is the term Liver Damage relate always to Cirrhosis of the Liver?
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Liver Damage can occur from many different things. Alcohol usage, hepatitis, cirrhosis, drug- and medication-related problems and trauma, just to name a few. Damage can be minor to severe.


Severe scarring of the liver is the condition known as cirrhosis. The development of cirrhosis indicates late stage liver disease and is usually followed by the onset of complications.

http://www.uihealthcare.com/topics/medicaldepartments/internalmedicine/liverdisease/index.html  (+ info)

Help answer my question Cirrhosis of the Liver?


I have nausea, cramping in my lower abdominal, soft stool, fatigue, feeling that my stomach is not digesting properly. Can these be symptoms of Cirrhosis of the Liver. Thank you
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What you describe are symptoms of a cirrhotic liver. Cirrhosis of the liver often does not have symptoms until it is fairly advanced. Symptoms include edema and ascites, (which is fluid build-up in the lower extremites and abdomen, respectively), jaundice, spider angiomas, itchy skin, a wasting/weight loss, and a tendency to frequent infections that don't respond well to antibiotics.

If you feel you are a candidate for a cirrhotic liver, you should consider a lifestyle change. I don't think, however, that that is what the problem is at this time.

You may have any number of digestive issues. Visit with your doctor and make a plan to rule out possible ailments and make sure you don't have any sort of infection.  (+ info)

when does a dr think liver enzymes readings are cirrhosis?


Wanted to see if anyone knew what liver enzyme reading ast/alt would concern a dr to the point to refer for a biopsy?
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Doctors don't generally make a diagnosis of cirrhosis based solely on liver enzymes, which are not a reliable indicator of liver damage, i.e. a person can have end-stage liver disease and NORMAL liver enzymes, or a healthy liver and ELEVATED enzymes.

While elevated liver enzymes indicate activity going on in the liver, they don't paint the whole picture, nor do they identify a specific liver problem, as many things can account for the elevation.

Further, the doctor will also consider: How high are the enzymes? Was it a sudden one-time spike, or have they been up in the 100s over a period of time? If elevated for a long time, have they remained steady around that level, or have they been steadily increasing?

It's important to provide the doctor with a full (honest) history to determine whether there are risk factors for liver disease. Patient history, symptoms, and blood count are among the indicators (as well as enzymes & biopsy) that will help a physician assess liver damage.

Liver biopsy remains the "gold standard" of evaluating the liver's condition. However, biopsy isn't always necessary, nor is it always 100% accurate, due to sampling error.

Generally, biopsy is only done to provide additional information that can't be assessed or confirmed through non-invasive measures - information that would help identify a specific liver disease or make a difference in determining a course of treatment.

If non-invasive measures do suggest advanced disease (cirrhosis), the doctor may decide AGAINST doing a biopsy due to risk.

So, in answer to your question, liver disease is complex, and assessing damage isn't as simple as a single test result, i.e. there isn't a liver enzyme level that prompts referral for biopsy, and biopsy isn't always needed to determine that someone has cirrhosis.  (+ info)

What are the physical signs of each stage of cirrhosis of the liver and are there 3 stages or more?


Someone I know has end stage liver disease and is still conscious and able to move around in a wheel chair. I was wondering how long she might have.
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The link below should help. I'm sorry about your friend.  (+ info)

what is the best treatment for primary liver cancer complicated with cirrhosis with portal thrombosis?


patient is a diabetic with low platelet count gastric verces are present. he has affected to primary liver cancer specially in right lobe with lot of nodules. if he get the treatment with radio frequency ablation will he stay with us for long period. what are the side effects of RFA?
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