Do you have any question about liver as we have listed below?
1. What is liver cirrhosis?
2. What are all the symptoms of liver cirrhosis?
3. How to cure liver cirrhosis naturally?
4. What is fatty liver cirrhosis?
5. What are all the ayurvedic liver cirrhosis treatment?
6. What are all the herbal treatment for liver cirrhosis?
7. What are the effects of liver cirrhosis?
8.What is cirrhosis of liver treatment?
9.What is the treatment for cirrhosis of the liver?
10.What is cirrhosis treatment?
11.What is the ayurvedic treatment for liver cirrhosis?
12.How is cirrhosis liver treatment can be done?
13.How cirrhosis of liver treatment can be done?
Liver Function, Location & Anatomy
Liver is a vital meaty organ of human beings located on the right side of the body below the lungs.The liver is vital cause it supports almost every organ inside the human body. It is the largest organ in humans. Weighing around 2kg it is reddish brown in color and a rubbery type of organ. Protected by the rib cage, it has two sections, namely the right and left lobes. The liver is connected to the hepatic artery and portal vein, two principle blood vessels in the body.
Functions of liver:
Hepatocytes or liver cells carry out all the functions of the liver. The liver is responsible for more than 500 functions in the body. Some of these functions are performed by the liver only and the others are carried out in combination with other glands and organs. All of its functions are physiological in nature. The principal functions are as follows:-
- Major role in metabolism of the body.
- Regulation of glycogen storage.
- Decomposition of red blood cells.
- Plasma protein synthesis(albumin).
- Hormone production and breakdown.
- Detoxification of body.
- Functions as an accessory digestive gland by producing bile. The bile is stored in the gall bladder. The bile, an alkaline compound helps in the digestion of fats by emulsification of lipids.
- Releases glucose into the blood by performing glycogenolysis, that is the breakdown of glucose into glycogen.
- Synthesizes a large part of amino acids in the body.
- Helps in blood clotting in case of wear and tear.
- It stores, many vitamins like vitamins A, D, K.
Liver thus has multiple and diverse functions. So, failure of liver or any hindrance to its normal activities can cause many diseases in the body. The normal functioning of a human will be hampered and he will fall ill.
Common liver problems:
There is more than a 80 liver disease. Among them the following are most common liver problems
- Alcoholic liver disease
- Fatty liver
- Hereditary diseases/ hemochromatosis
- Wilson’s disease
- Transthyretin related amyloidosis
- Gilbert’s syndrome
- Hepatocellular carcinoma
- Primary biliary cirrhosis
- Primary sclerosing cholangitis
- Budd-Chiari syndrome
Of all the above diseases, perhaps the most fatal one is liver cirrhosis.
What is liver cirrhosis?
Cirrhosis of the liver occurs when fibrous tissues form in place of liver cells. The liver cells die because of a variety of reasons. Cirrhosis causes chronic liver failure. It is a slowly progressing disease where the liver tissue is replaced by scar tissue. The colour of the liver gland changes to yellow from reddish brown due to this degenerative disease. Thus, in liver cirrhosis the liver gets scarred.
Signs and Symptoms of liver cirrhosis:
Cirrhosis occurs due to long term liver damage. Generally, there are no sign and symptoms of liver cirrhosis during the initial periods. The disease develops slowly over months or years. As the cirrhosis become critical the following signs and symptoms of alcoholic liver cirrhosis may occur.
- Prolonged period of fatigue or weakness.
- Itching sensation every now and then.
- Swelling in the lower legs or on other parts of the body.
- Development of pale yellow skin due to the accumulation of bilirubin. Jaundice is a symptom of liver failure due to cirrhosis in some cases
- Getting bruised easily because the liver is not producing the blood clotting factors.
- Fluid build up in the lower abdomen.
- Development of blood vessel visible through the skin.
- Getting readily infected.
- Hepatic encephalopathy
- Internal bleeding of veins in the esophagus or stomach veins with blood vomit.
- In some worst cases, unconsciousness.
- Loss of appetite.
- High blood pressure.
What are the complications occurring due to cirrhosis of liver?
Cirrhosis being a highly volatile and dangerous disease cause various complications. When the cirrhosis becomes severe the body sends a signal to the kidney to retain salt and water. The excess salt and water are first accumulated in the tissue beneath the skin of ankles nad legs. This happens there first due to an effect of gravity while standing or sitting. As the condition worsens and more salt and water are retained in the system, the body might start to accumulate fluid in the abdominal cavity. This accumulation occurs between abdominal walls and abdominal cavities. This causes swelling, abdominal discomfort and weight gain. The fluid in the cavity is the ideal place for bacteria to grow. Normally bacterial infection is stopped by the liver. But in the case of cirrhosis, the liver is not working properly bacteria can grow freely and finds it’s way into the intestine. This is called spontaneous bacterial peritonitis(SBP).
Another complication is bleeding from esophageal varices. The scar tissue developed due to cirrhosis blocks the return floe of blood from the intestines to the heart. Thus pressure increases inside the portal vein. This forces the blood to bypass through other small veins, the veins lining the lower part of the esophagus and upper part of the stomach. This increased flow increases pressure and bleeding occurs rupturing the varices sometimes. Bleeding of varices if not treated immediately may prove fatal sometimes.
Some proteins that escape digestion and absorption are used by the bacteria to prepare toxic substances. They do so while using the protein for their own physiological process. Due to liver damage the liver doesn’t function properly and the bacterial population is high. So they really use the proteins to produce various chemicals that can be absorbed into the body. one of these substances, for example, ammonia can be harmful to the body when absorbed. This gives rise to a complicated medical syndrome called hepatic encephalopathy.
Cirrhosis in a worse state may give rise to hepatorenal syndrome. This is a serious complication in which the kidney has a reduced functionality. However, no physical damage is done to the kidney.
In some rare cases of cirrhosis of liver, the patient may find breathing troublesome. This is called hepato-pulmonary syndrome. This happens due to irregular and reduced blood flow through the lungs.
Splenomegaly or swelling in size of the spleen is another critical complication. This happens due to accumulation of blood into the vein due to irregular blood flow and increased blood pressure in the portal vein. The spleen becomes so large sometimes causing abdominal pain.
In later cases, gall-bladder stones are common due to uncontrolled flow of bile into the gall bladder.
What are the major causes of liver cirrhosis ?
It’s important to determine the cause of liver cirrhosis since treating that underlying cause may prevent any further liver damage. Liver cirrhosis being a complicated disease as it is, is caused by a number of reasons. The major reasons are as follows.
- Iron build up in the body (hemochromatosis)
- Cystic fibrosis.
- Wilson’s disease (copper accumulated in the liver)
- Biliary artesia ( poor formation of bile ducts)
- Inherited disorders of sugar metabolism (galactosemia or glycogen storage disease)
- Alagile syndrome(genetic digestive disorder)
- Auto-immune hepatitis ( liver disease caused by it’s own immunity). Found predominantly in women it causes destruction of hepatocytes and finally cirrhosis.
Some other causes that occur in adults during later stages:
- Chronic alcohol abuse
- Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease caused due to accumulation of fat in the body
- Hepatitis B
- Hepatitits C
- Primary biliary cirrhosis ( destruction of the bile ducts). An abnormality of the immune system found mainly in women.
- Primary sclerosing cholangitis ( hardening and scarring of bile ducts). The large bile duct on the outside of the liver get inflamed and obstructed. Bstruction causes infection.
- Schistosomiasis or infection by a parasite.
- Unusual reaction to drugs
- Prolonged exposure to toxins, accumulating in the body to subdue liver function.
Cirrhosis may develop due to more than one of the above causes. In 20% cases the doctor cannot diagnose the cause of liver cirrhosis in adult. This is known as cryptographic cirrhosis.
How is cirrhosis liver disease diagnosed ?
Liver with cirrhosis is diagnosed via medical analysis of the following:
- Identifiable and recognised syndromes like yellowing of the skin due to jaundice.
- Physical examination of the patient. The doctor can feel the lower edge of an enlarged liver below the left rib cage in some cases. People with alcohol abuse have radiating blood vessels beneath the skin, particularly in the chest.
- CAT(computerised axial tomography) scan revealing formation of scar tissue.
- Ultrasonography or USG
- Radioisotope of liver/ spleen to recognise spllen inflammation.
- Liver biopsy.
- Upper GI tract endoscopy to detect bleeding eophageal varices.
Once diagnosed immediate treatment is recommended as delay might prove fatal.
Treatment for liver cirrhosis:
treatment for liver cirrhosis includes four steps or four different ways. They are:-
- Preventing further damage to the cirrhosistic liver.
- Treating the already present complication.
- Preventing liver cancer or treating it early.
- Liver transplantation if necessary.
Preventing further damage:
Further liver damage can be treated by a controlled diet and one multivitamin intake daily. Patients who are diagnosed with PBC may need additional vitamins D and K. Any further use of drugs or alcohol is strictly prohibited. Abstinence from alcohol may increase the health of the liver to a large extent. Even patients with critical hepatitis B or C can reduce liver damage to a large extent by pertaining from liver abuse.
Further damage may also be stopped by not using steroidal drugs. They should also not use anti-inflammatory drugs commonly known as NSAIDs.
Suppress the immune system with drugs such as azathioprine for an auto-immune disorder.
The patient should be immunized against infection due to hepatitis A, C.
Treating the already present complications:
Eradicate hepatitis B and C virus by taking antiviral medications. But in some cases, patients may show side effects due to anti-viral treatments. So, treatment a liver cirrhosis due to hepatitis should be done by an experienced doctor only.
Blood should be removed from patients suffering from hemochromatosis to reduce the level of iron. This should prevent further damage to the liver.
In Wilson’s disease, the patient should be given medications enhancing the release of copper into the urine. This will ensure decrease of copper levels in the body.
The ankles swell up due to retention of salt and water. The patients should be advised to curb salt intake by restricting dietary salt and fluid to decrease edema or ascites. But, in some cases of cirrhosis, this doesn’t help and diuretics are prescribed. During treatment with diuretics, it is essential to monitor the level of creatinine in the blood. Another treatment to prevent ascites is TIPS( transjugular intravenous portosystemic shunting).
Critical cirrhosis means the formation of varices in the upper stomach or esophageal region. Bleeding in varices increases the fatality risk. So, it should be treated immediately to prevent further bleeding.
Hepatic encephalopathy should be treated with a protein rich diet and regular monitoring.
The filtration of blood due to hypersplenism can cause reduction of red blood cells, white blood cells to the level of anemia. A liver cirrhosis patient with anemia must be given a blood transfusion.
SBP, spontaneous bacterial peritonitis patients have high bacterial growth in their blood and urine. Treatment should be done in the hospital with constant monitoring along with intravenous antibiotics. Cirrhosis liver disease being critical should be treated with seriousness.
Preventing liver cancer or treating it early:
cells developing due to cirrhosis of liver pose an imminent threat. However, early detection in the curable stage can save the life through surgery. Liver cancer is very hard to detect. The cancerous cells release a protein in the blood called alpha-fetoprotein. Detection of this protein can lead to the detection of the cancer.
Cirrhosis is treatable but also irreversible. In a far advanced stage it will go on damaging the liver and give rise to complications despite treatment. So often, liver transplantation is the only viable option left to save life of the patient. Liver transplantation have a success rate of over 80%. Over 80% of patients stay alive 5yeras after transplantation. Advanced medications assure that the transplanted liver is not rejected. Infection due to transplantation can also be stopped.
Herbal & Ayurveda treatment for liver cirrhosis:
Apart from the above-mentioned treatments, liver cirrhosis patients can also be treated via the knowledge of ayurveda. In ayurveda liver cirrhosis disease is known as “yakrit vriddhi”. However there are some excellent medical remedies in herbal and ayurveda treatment for liver cirrhosis. They are as follows:-
- Bhringaraja: the best ayurvedic herb to treat liver cirrhosis. The juice extracted from the stem, flowers, roots and leaves should be consumed with honey. It cures infantile cirrhosis.
- Katuki: katuki is used to treat cirrhosis of liver in adults. It’s roots are used in the treatment in powdered form. The powder should be mixed with equal proportions of honey and consumed three times a day. This should be followed by a cup of warm water. Katuki along with honey stimulates the liver in producing more bile and thus regenerates liver function.
- Aarogyavardhini vati: It is a tablet made of katuki and copper supplements. Dosage is two tablets of 250 mg with warm water. This should be taken three to four times a day depending upon the seriousness of the disease.
- Some other drugs recommended for treating a liver cirrhosis patient are triphala, vasaka, kakamachi etc.
How to cure liver cirrhosis naturally?
besides all the above ayurvedic or allopathic treatments there are some home remedies also to cure liver cirrhosis naturally. They are as follows.
1. Tomato juice should be taken with a pinch of rock salt or gandhak lavan.
2. Papaya seeds are an important cure. It should be grounded and mixed with a teaspoon of lemon juice. This mixture should be consumed twice daily.
3. Carrot juice and spinach juice mixed together is an excellent remedy for treating liver conditions. It is used in treating fatty liver cirrhosis.
4. Leaves of fig may be used to treat cirrhosis. The leaves should be dried and mashed, then mixed with sugar and water. This drink is a good homemade remedy to treat cirrhosis in the liver.
5. Raddish in any form should be included in the diet.
6. Liver functioning can be improved by taking lime juice with rock salt.
Diet to maintain during treatment of fatty liver cirrhosis:
Diet plays an important part during the course of treatment. So in a case of cirrhosis, the following diet should be maintained strictly.
1. Restrictions in all fatty, fried items that are hard to digest.
2. Alcohol is strictly prohibited.
3. Consumption of other beverages like coffee and tea should be checked.
4. Cow milk or goat milk is essential. Sugarcane juice intake is recommended.
5. If possible the food should be salt less for people with fluid accumulation in the abdomen.
6. Plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables should be incorporated into the diet.
7. The patient should restrain from heavy works and slow walking and jogging are recommended.