cause of Cirrhosis

Cirrhosis is scarring of the liver. It is a very serious condition when a person has cirrhosis. The liver is a major organ of the body that does a variety of functions. Some of those functions include creating bile which helps digest food and control bleeding, controls the amount of sugar, protein and fat in the bloodstream, stores vitamins, minerals and iron, filters poison from blood and breaks down and metabolizes drugs and alcohol. Without a functioning liver, it often can lead to very serious illness and even death.


During the onset of Cirrhosis, a patient may not experience many signs or symptoms. Often, the symptoms that a patient experiences may not be related to their liver. Symptoms of Cirrhosis often do not appear until the condition has become serious. As the condition worsens, signals are sent to the kidneys telling them to begin retaining fluid. This causes excessive salt and water build up underneath the skin around the legs and ankles. As Cirrhosis set in, the body will continue to experience other symptoms.

These include:

  • Fatigue and weakness

  • Itching

  • Fluid build up in the legs and the abdomen

  • Redness of palms

  • Spider angiomas: tiny red bumps and lines on the skin

  • Jaundice: yellowing of the skin

  • Bruising easily

  • Loss of appetite

  • Bleeding from enlarged veins in the digestive tract

  • Excessive nosebleeds

  • Muscle wasting

  • Weight loss

  • Belly discomfort

  • Frequent infections

  • Confusion

Testing for Cirrhosis

Cirrhosis is life threatening and should be treated so that a patient can receive immediate treatment. A doctor may take a physical exam and ask about a patient’s current medical history. If a physical exam and medical exam reveal that Cirrhosis could be present, then a doctor will use blood tests for further investigation. A blood test will help a doctor check the liver for inflammation, evaluate liver function and also help figure out the cause of Cirrhosis. The doctor may also check for tumors that are blocking the bile ducts or do a liver biopsy.

Treating Cirrhosis

The liver is unable to be cured or repaired for any scarring that may be present. With proper treatment, a person can limit any further damage to his/her liver. Some of the treatments for Cirrhosis include avoiding substances that can hurt the liver (such as alcohol), preventing and treating the symptoms of Cirrhosis or having a liver transplant. If a patient is currently drinking alcohol, then he/she should discontinue the use. A patient should also make a list of all of the current medicines and prescriptions that he is taking (this includes over the counter such as Aleve or Ibuprofen also). It is also advisable to begin a low-sodium diet if the body is retaining fluid. By reducing fluid intake, it will prevent fluid build up in the abdomen and in the chest.

Take Care of Your Body

It is important to incorporate healthy habits into your daily habit. Get plenty of exercise, eat fruits and vegetables, don’t drink excessive alcohol or experiment with drugs. Those who are heavy drinkers or misuse prescription and non-prescription drugs can damage their liver. Everybody should practice healthy eating and take part in some type of daily exercise at least 30 minutes each day.

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