Liver Diseases – Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment

Liver Diseases – Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment
December 30 05:44 2020 by admin Print This Article

The liver is essential for the proper digestion of food and the elimination of toxic materials from the body. If liver failure occurs, the impact on health can be life-threatening because of the effect it has on nutrition and the build-up of toxicity in the body.

The Causes

Liver diseases, which may result in liver failure, has many possible causes. Among the most common are:

  • Liver infections such as hepatitis which could be of A, B or C type
  • Herpes and other viral infections
  • An inherited (genetic) condition
  • An abnormality of the immune system
  • Cancer either of the liver itself or another organ
  • Lifestyle issues such as alcohol and drug abuse, overuse of prescription medications, etc.
  • Dietary habits and the excessive consumption of certain herbal compounds

Risk Factors

The people most at risk of liver disease and failure are those who:

  • Have a family history of liver disease
  • Consume a large amount of alcohol either regularly or by way of occasional binge drinking
  • Are obese
  • Suffer from diabetes
  • Have tattoos and/or body piercings
  • Self inject drugs and other such substances
  • Indulge in unprotected sex
  • Are exposed to the blood and bodily fluids of others
  • Have been exposed to toxic chemicals and similar substances

The Liver Failure Pathway

Liver conditions that lead to failure of the organ typically, but not always, follow a set pathway:

  • Inflammation stage: This is the first stage of liver failure. The liver shows signs of tenderness and inflammation. This may result in pain and discomfort or it may, in some cases, happen with no appreciable symptoms.
  • Scarring: In the second stage the inflammation causes scarring to develop on the liver tissue. When this happens, the blood flow to the organ is disrupted and the functioning of the liver is affected. The liver must work harder, and this increased pressure causes the scarring to keep increasing.
  • Cirrhosis: Cirrhosis of the liver is not always due to excessive alcohol consumption. Any disease of the liver can cause it. The term is used to indicate an advanced stage of scarring when the liver’s function is severely affected to the extent that failure is imminent.
  • End-Stage failure: This is a term that covers all conditions and causes that have caused the liver to either have extremely limited function or to stop working completely. At this stage, the threat to life is extreme.

Diagnosis and Treatment

The diagnosis of liver disease or failure should be done only by specialist doctors at a hospital with a Liver Disease Center of Excellence. The methods used to diagnose the condition include blood tests, imaging to enable the doctors to see the condition of the liver and biopsies.

The treatment of liver disease is done in 3 ways:

  • If the specialists think that the condition can be cured by medication, several prescription drugs may be used. The choice will depend on the doctors.
  • In some cases, if the liver condition is caused by a viral infection, the hospital may decide that supportive care that will treat and control the symptoms until the infection has run its course is the best option.
  • If the damage that has occurred is beyond recovery or repair, then the only option available is a liver transplant. Liver transplants, although highly complex and sophisticated surgeries are safe if done in a hospital with the best transplant surgeons and cutting-edge medical equipment. In such cases, a section of a healthy liver is removed from a donor and placed in the patient. Because the liver is an organ that is able to regenerate itself, the risk to the donor is limited and the transplanted liver section will develop into a functional organ in the patient.

The liver disease must never be taken lightly – it can lead to life-threatening liver failure. If you suspect that you have a liver condition or have been diagnosed with one, go to a specialized liver transplant hospital that will be able to provide the treatment required and, if necessary, perform a liver transplant.

Please contact our 24×7 Dedicated Liver Helpline: Ph: +91 73736 53653 for immediate advice and queries related to liver disease and transplantation.


Kauvery Hospital is globally known for its multidisciplinary services at all its Centers of Excellence, and for its comprehensive, Avant-Grade technology, especially in diagnostics and remedial care in heart diseases, transplantation, vascular and neurosciences medicine. Located in the heart of Trichy (Tennur, Royal Road and Alexandria Road (Cantonment), Chennai, Hosur and Salem, the hospital also renders adult and pediatric trauma care.

Chennai – 044 4000 6000 • Trichy – Cantonment – 0431 4077777 • Trichy – Heartcity – 0431 4003500 • Trichy – Tennur – 0431 4022555 • Hosur – 04344 272727 • Salem – 0427 2677777 • Bengaluru – 080 6801 6801

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2 Comments

  1. Karthik
    February 26, 19:34 #1 Karthik

    Good to see so many treatments that work for liver disease !

    Reply to this comment
  2. Gnanalatha
    December 11, 14:22 #2 Gnanalatha

    Having tattoos and body piercings can increase the risk of liver diseases? This really is news to me.

    Reply to this comment

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