If the liver is too sick to perform its functions, it is called liver failure. Liver failure is classified in two as acute and chronic.
Acute Liver Failure: It develops suddenly and almost all liver function is lost. Causes may be acute viral hepatitis (hepatitis A and hepatitis B viruses), drug intoxications, fungal poisoning, viral diseases of unknown cause.
Chronic liver failure (cirrhosis): Irreversible liver failure. Cause: chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV), hepatitis C virus, alcoholism, autoimmune diseases (autoimmune hepatitis, primary biliary cirrhosis, primary sclerosing cholangitis), Wilson’s disease, Budd-Chiari syndrome, cryptogenic cirrhosis.
What Are The Symptoms of Chronic Liver Failure?
- Dark colored urine
- Tendency to sleep, tremor in hands, confusion, coma
- Hematemesis (bloody vomitting)
- Bleeding tendency in the body
- Gray or clay-colored stools
- Water accumulation in the abdomen (acid)
What Is Cirrhosis?
In chronic liver failure the liver is become hardening, shrinking and forming large and small nodules on it . It called cirrhosis. There are stages of cirrhosis. Some patients have cirrhosis and can live for 15-20 years without transplantation. Fatigue, sleep tendency, yellowing in the eyes, dark color urine, swelling in the feet, itching are the initial symptoms. In later stages of the disease, many life-threatening complications may occur, such as hematemesis, water retention in the abdomen (acid), impaired consciousness, coma, intense jaundice, reduced kidney function, bleeding tendency. Then the liver transplant becomes a must for the survival of these patients.
Causes of The Liver Damage?
Hepatitis, alcohol, liver cancer, biliary tract diseases, metabolic diseases, and acute liver failure are some of the most common diseases that cause liver damage.
Hepatitis; is an inflammation of the liver that causes damage to the liver cell. Virus infection (viral hepatitis A, B, C), overdose drug usage (such as acetaminophen, paracetamol), exposure to chemicals (dry cleaning chemicals and some wild mushrooms) are among the most common causes of hepatitis.
How Can We Protect Ourselves From Liver Diseases?
Avoiding alcohol and preventing hepatitis B-C formation would help for the prevention of liver failure. Vaccination of newborns and people without hepatitis B would be useful.
Hepatit virus is transmitted with shared infected needles among drug addicts, blood transfusion with hepatitis B&C infected blood and it is rarely transmitted from other infected materials or sexually infected individuals too.