Liver Cirrhosis in Phoenix, AZ
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What is liver cirrhosis?
The liver conducts an array of vital functions necessary for your health, like filtering the blood of harmful toxins and breaking down fat. Liver cirrhosis, also called hepatic cirrhosis, describes the medical condition that arises when the liver becomes inflamed and scarred from issues like late-stage liver disease and chronic alcohol abuse. As more scar tissue develops, the functionality of the liver continually decreases. The different grades of severity of liver cirrhosis are broken down into four stages.
Stage 1: Some scarring of liver tissue but there are not many symptoms and no complications have occurred.
Stage 2: Additional symptoms develop, including swollen and enlarged veins and hypertension involving the portal vein in the liver (known as portal hypertension).
Stage 3: Symptoms in this stage include swelling in the abdomen and advanced scarring of liver tissue, accompanied by serious complications and the potential for liver failure.
Stage 4: At this stage, the condition could be fatal without a liver transplant.
At Arizona Digestive Health, our GI team can identify, address, and help patients manage liver concerns. To get care for liver cirrhosis in Phoenix, AZ, please request a consultation with one of our providers today.
What causes liver cirrhosis?
There are a number of factors that can cause liver damage, which could result in cirrhosis. These factors can include the following:
- Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)
- Alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency
- Inherited digestive disorders
- Sugar metabolism disorders
- Wilson’s disease
- Cystic fibrosis
- Certain medications
- Alcohol use disorder
- Viral liver infections (hepatitis B & C)
- Poorly formed bile ducts
- Damage to the bile ducts
- Liver disease caused by autoimmune hepatitis
- Iron accumulation in the body
If you have liver issues and require help, connect with the gastroenterologists at Arizona Digestive Health. Our skills and experience can guide you to the best treatment options for you.
What are the symptoms of liver cirrhosis?
The beginning stages of liver cirrhosis may not carry any symptoms but some of the first signs you might notice could include fatigue, physical weakness, and appetite loss. As liver cirrhosis continues to progress, some of the symptoms might include:
- Spider web-like veins
- Cramping of muscles
- Red palms
- Bloody stools
- Swelling in the abdomen
- Bruise or bleed easily
- Unexpected weight gain or loss
- Brown-tinted urine
- Swollen legs
What treatment options are available for liver cirrhosis?
Liver damage cannot be reversed; however, it could still function and bounce back even if two-thirds of the organ has been destroyed or removed. Below are several of the treatment options our Phoenix, AZ team may recommend to improve liver function:
- Undergo a liver transplant
- Antiviral medications for hepatitis B and C
- Targeting the specific complications of your condition
- Avoiding specific medications (naproxen, ibuprofen, etc.)
- Reduce the risk of additional liver damage
- Immunization for hepatitis A and B
Are there complications associated with liver cirrhosis?
The liver has a vital job in the body, and any injury or damage done to the liver will hurt its ability to function normally. Possible health complications from liver cirrhosis include:
- Hypersplenism (overactive splenic function)
- Bacterial peritonitis (an inflamed abdominal wall)
- Cancer of the liver
- Hepatic encephalopathy (the aggregation of toxins in the bloodstream resulting in brain damage)
Seek treatment for liver cirrhosis
Scarring of the liver can impact your health and life in a variety of ways. At Arizona Digestive Health, we aim to help you enjoy your life while preventing further liver damage. To get treatment for liver cirrhosis in Phoenix, AZ, please request a consultation with our team as soon as possible.
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