CLD

Cirrhosis is a complication of many liver diseases. It is a chronic condition in which the liver slowly deteriorates and malfunctions due to chronic injury. Scar tissue replaces healthy liver tissue, partially blocking the flow of blood through the liver. Scarring also impairs the liver’s ability to  produce bile to help absorb fats including cholesterol and fat-soluble vitamins A healthy liver is able to regenerate most of its own cells when they become damaged. With end-stage cirrhosis, the liver can no longer effectively replace damaged cells. A healthy liver is necessary for survival.

Causes:

Cirrhosis has various causes. Cirrhosis is most commonly caused by alcoholism, hepatitis B and C, and fatty liver disease, but has many other possible causes. Some cases are idiopathic. Obesity is becoming a common cause of cirrhosis, either as the sole cause or in combination with alcohol, hepatitis C, or both. Many people with cirrhosis have more than one cause of liver damage. Cirrhosis is not caused by trauma to the liver or other acute, or short-term, causes of damage. Usually years of chronic injury are required to cause cirrhosis. Alcohol-related liver disease – Most people who consume alcohol do not suffer damage to the liver. But heavy alcohol use over several years can cause chronic injury to the liver. The amount of alcohol it takes to damage the liver varies greatly from person to person. For women, consuming two to three drinks—including beer and wine—per day and for men, three to four drinks per day, can lead to liver damage and cirrhosis. In the past, alcohol-related cirrhosis led to more deaths than cirrhosis due to any other cause. Deaths caused by obesity-related cirrhosis are increasing. Chronic hepatitis C – The hepatitis C virus is a liver infection that is spread by contact with an infected person’s blood. Chronic hepatitis C causes inflammation and damage to the liver over time that can lead to cirrhosis.

Symptoms:

  1. Loss of appetite
  2. Lack of energy (fatigue), which may be debilitating.
  3. Nausea, vomiting.
  4. Weight loss or sudden weight gain.
  5. Fluid retention (edema) and swelling in the ankles, legs, and abdomen (often an early sign).