CIRRHOSIS: Symptoms, Diagnosis, and 7 ways to prevent.

cirrhosis

CIRRHOSIS

Cirrhosis is the condition of scarring of the liver. In this scar tissue, start replacing healthy liver cells. It occurs as a result of infection from alcohol. 

The size of the liver is about equal to the size of a football. It does important jobs of our internal system. It helps in the digestion of food buy by filtering toxins and restoring nutrients. It also helps in fighting infection.

Whenever the liver faces any hard substance, be it alcohol, toxins, viral infections, or due to any disease, it forms scar tissue. With the increase in cirrhosis, scar tissue increases. When these tissues reach limits, our liver stops functioning. 

It is a chronic liver disease and can also be life-threatening. 

cirrhosis

Symptoms of Cirrhosis

Mainly, there are o symptoms observed until liver damage is on a large scale. But, when they do occur, symptoms are:

  • Fatigue
  • Confusion
  • Slurred speech
  • Breast enlargement
  • Bruising
  • Redness in palms
  • Loss of appetite
  • Fluid collection in the abdomen
  • Nausea
  • Itchy skin
  • Swelling in ankles, legs
  • Weight loss
  • Weakness
  • Jaundice
  • Fever
  • Bloody vomit
  • Brownish urine
  • Muscle cramps
  • Anorexia
  • Impotence
  • Gynecomastia
cirrhosis

Causes of Cirrhosis

It develops because of liver disease. It is mandatory to preserve the healthy liver tissues to avoid cirrhosis or worsening of it. Whenever you feel that your eating habit are not good, you can change your diet to avoid cirrhosis. 

It causes hardening and shrinking of the liver. This prevents blood flow to the liver. There are many causes that can affect the liver. Some of them are listed below.

  • Alcohol abuse
  • Hepatitis C, B, D
  • Autoimmune Hepatitis
  • Wilson’s Disease
  • Hemochromatosis
  • Fatty liver disease
  • Cystic fibers
  • Alagille syndrome
  • Glycogen storage disease
  • Infection
  • Medications
  • Alpha-1 deficiency

Diagnosis of Cirrhosis

It starts with several screenings, physical exams, detailed history, routine check-up levels, etc. You will be asked your complete medical history about alcohol consumption, diseases among family history, or other risk factors.

Tests

Some test that helps in diagnosing the growth or presence of this disease are mentioned below:

  • Blood count
  • Liver tests to check the function of the liver
  • Screening to check liver cancer.
  • Albumin ( it checks how much protein the liver produces)
  • Blood clots
  • Liver ultrasound
  • Abdomen’s MRI
  • Liver Biopsy
  • Liver enzymes test

Physical Exam

Many causes that might confirm that its presence can be seen in the body. Such as follows:

  • Hand tremors
  • Pale skin
  • Lack in attention
  • Yellow eyes
  • Small testicles
  • Red palm
  • Enlarged liver

Stages of Cirrhosis

Like many other diseases, it has stages. The diagnosis confirms the stage of cirrhosis. There are two stages depending on the functioning of the liver. Both stages have different treatments.

Compensated Cirrhosis

In this stage, lives or body does not show any symptoms. This stage can exist for up to many years without getting treated or even noticed. In this, the scar tissues are less as compared to healthy tissues. 

Decompensated Cirrhosis

This stage comes after compensated stage. At this stage, the scar tissues increase in numbers so much that lives start developing complications.

The symptoms are listed below. Kindly consult a doctor if you observe any of these.

  • Jaundice
  • Ascites
  • Bleeding Varices
  • Hepatic Encephalopathy
  • Hepatorenal syndrome

Treatment of Cirrhosis

It can be treated if the doctor knows the exact stage and condition of the liver. The treatment works on the healthy tissue you have left with. The first step is always to prevent the source of cirrhosis. The other treatments used are mentioned below:

  • Nitrates or Beta Blockers
  • Low protein diet
  • Banding procedure
  • Hemodialysis
  • Quitting drinking
  • Intravenous antibiotics
  • Liver transplant
  • Medications
  • Weight loss for obese
  • Vaccine for flu, pneumonia, hepatitis
  • Low salt diet
  • Drink enough water

Risk Factors of Cirrhosis

On the liver, whatever damage is caused cannot be recovered. It can only be destroyed. The main causes are alcohol abuse, overweight, or having viral hepatitis. These are very easy to control. Once you reduce the level of these risk factors, you will make your liver healthy. 

Prevention of Cirrhosis

There are plenty of ways to prevent cirrhosis and to make your liver healthy. 

  • Avoid drinking alcohol
  • Maintain body weight
  • Adopt a healthy diet schedule
  • Take vaccination for hepatitis.
  • Take regular medical check-ups.
cirrhosis prevention

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