Liver disease (also called hepatic disease) is a type of damage to or disease of the liver. Whenever the course of the problem lasts long, chronic liver disease ensues
Signs and symptoms
Some of the signs and symptoms of liver disease are the following:
Confusion and altered consciousness caused by hepatic encephalopathy.
Thrombocytopenia and coagulopathy.
Risk of bleeding symptoms particularly taking place in gastrointestinal tract
Ascites, the accumulation of fluid in the abdominal cavity.
Ground glass hepatocytes
Primary biliary cirrhosis
There are more than a hundred different kinds of liver disease. These are some of the most common:
- Fascioliasis, a parasitic infection of liver caused by a liver fluke of the genus Fasciola, mostly the Fasciola hepatica.
- Hepatitis, inflammation of the liver, is caused by various viruses (viral hepatitis) also by some liver toxins (e.g. alcoholic hepatitis), autoimmunity (autoimmune hepatitis) or hereditary conditions.
- Alcoholic liver disease is a hepatic manifestation of alcohol overconsumption, including fatty liver disease, alcoholic hepatitis, and cirrhosis. Analogous terms such as "drug-induced" or "toxic" liver disease are also used to refer to disorders caused by various drugs.
- Fatty liver disease (hepatic steatosis) is a reversible condition where large vacuoles of triglyceride fat accumulate in liver cells. Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease is a spectrum of disease associated with obesity and metabolic syndrome.
- Hereditary diseases that cause damage to the liver include hemochromatosis, involving accumulation of iron in the body, and Wilson's disease. Liver damage is also a clinical feature of alpha 1-antitrypsin deficiency and glycogen storage disease type II.
- In transthyretin-related hereditary amyloidosis, the liver produces a mutated transthyretin protein which has severe neurodegenerative or cardiopathic effects. Liver transplantation can give a curative treatment option.
- Gilbert's syndrome, a genetic disorder of bilirubin metabolism found in a small percent of the population, can cause mild jaundice.
- Cirrhosis is the formation of fibrous tissue (fibrosis) in the place of liver cells that have died due to a variety of causes, including viral hepatitis, alcohol overconsumption, and other forms of liver toxicity. Cirrhosis causes chronic liver failure.
- Primary liver cancer most commonly manifests as hepatocellular carcinoma or cholangiocarcinoma; rarer forms include angiosarcoma and hemangiosarcoma of the liver. (Many liver malignancies are secondary lesions that have metastasized from primary cancers in the gastrointestinal tract and other organs, such as the kidneys, lungs.)
- Primary biliary cirrhosis is a serious autoimmune disease of the bile capillaries.
- Primary sclerosing cholangitis is a serious chronic inflammatory disease of the bile duct, which is believed to be autoimmune in origin.
- Budd–Chiari syndrome is the clinical picture caused by occlusion of the hepatic vein.
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Clinical Gastroenterology Journal