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Cirrhosis

21 Mar 2012
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Image source: Jiju Kurian Punnoose; Wikimedia Commons – Anatomy of Liver

OVERVIEW

Cirrhosis is a chronic liver disease where the liver becomes permanently scarred due to damage sustained often through excessive alcohol consumption or hepatitis.

As scar tissue accumulates in the liver, the liver begins to struggle to undertake its normal functions.

Causes

Factors that may increase the risk of developing liver cirrhosis can include:

 

Symptoms
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea and/or vomiting
  • Pale-coloured stools
  • Nosebleeds
  • Fluid build-up in the legs or abdomen
  • Weight loss
  • Yellowing of skin

 

Treatment

Treatment for cirrhosis can include:

  • Stop alcohol consumption
  • Eat a healthy and balanced diet
  • Exercise
  • Medication
  • Liver transplant

 

Prevention
  • Control alcohol consumption (men shouldn't regularly drink more than 3–4 units [1 unit = 10mL or 8g of pure alcohol] per day, women shouldn't regularly drink more than 2–3 units per day)
  • Protect yourself from contracting hepatitis by engaging in safe sex and not sharing needles

 

If you have any of the above symptoms consult your general practitioner.

 

VIDEOS

 


Video: Cirrhosis of the liver

 

 


Video: NHS – Cirrhosis

 

RESOURCES & SUPPORT

International

NHS – Cirrhosis
British Liver Trust – Cirrhosis
Primary Biliary Cirrhosis Foundation
American Liver Foundation

 

RESEARCH

British Medical Journal
Journal of the American Medical Association
The Lancet

 

FORUMS

MD Junction – Cirrhosis Support Group
DailyStrength.com – Cirrhosis Support Group

 

 

DISCLAIMER
The information above is of a general nature and is designed to provide you with an overview of the topic, with links to local and international resources that may be of interest.  We do our best to ensure that this information is accurate and up to date.

You should always, however, seek specific professional medical advice, treatment and care appropriate to you, and as such we strongly recommend you consult with your general practitioner first.

 

 

Updated April 2012
Image source: Wikimedia Commons – Anatomy of Liver