Cirrhosis of the Liver and Alcoholism

Published: 2023-01-03
Cirrhosis of the Liver and Alcoholism
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Policy Culture United States Sociology Accounting
Pages: 5
Wordcount: 1306 words
11 min read

According to Mansour-Ghanaei et al. 2015), cirrhosis of the liver refers to damaging of the liver that results in abnormal liver function as a result of severe liver injury. Nearly 75% of the population in the United States uses alcohol, with a 7% prevalence of alcoholism. Besides, alcohol accounts for almost 100,000 mortality in America annually; with approximately 20% of those deaths caused by cirrhosis (Purohit, Russo, & Salin, 2003). Alcoholic addiction or abuse rates are higher for men and women for non-blacks than blacks. Cirrhosis is the twelfth leading cause of death by disease, killing about 26,000 people each year. Abuse of alcohol presents severe public health and social challenges, all of which can are avertable. Besides, the cost of cirrhosis in terms of hospital costs, human suffering, and, lost productivity is high.

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Alcoholic Liver Disease

Cirrhosis of the liver is a result of progressive liver injury of several kinds. While surplus use of alcohol and severe infection with hepatitis viruses such as hepatitis C and hepatitis B are the major causes of cirrhosis in America. Cirrhosis can be triggered by other conditions comprising fatty liver disease, drug-induced injury, inherited disorders, bile duct disorders, and autoimmune diseases. A considerable percentage of patients do not have a particular cause for cirrhosis. This called cryptogenic cirrhosis

How Cirrhosis Develop

There are several causes of liver injury such as excessive ingestion of alcohol, viruses, drug-associated injury, inherited disorders, and, environmental toxin contact. Damage to the liver resulting in inflammation that may be identified by abnormalities in liver- associated blood tests. At times passes by, ongoing injury causes developing of scar tissues in the liver, a process known as fibrosis (Yang, et al. 2017). Because the liver has a significant amount of reserve function, mild to moderate volumes of fibrosis, typically do not lead to symptoms. Nevertheless, as the level of fibrosis elevate disrupting the usual shape and function of the liver. Cirrhosis happens when the conventional structure of the liver is dislocated by bands of damaged tissues. One role of the liver is to filter the blood of its way back to the heart from the digestive system. When cirrhosis is existing, the existence of scar tissue causes amplified resistance to the flow of blood through the liver. This leads to high pressures formulating in the veins which drain into the liver, a process known as portal hypertension. Several of the difficulties of liver disease, such as fluid retaining and esophageal bleeding, are instigated by the occurrence of portal hypertension.

Symptoms of Cirrhosis

At the early phases, the signs and symptoms of liver cirrhosis may be missing or non- particular. Early non- specific symptoms constitute itching and fatigue. As damaged tissue substitute healthy tissue and liver task deteriorates, a number of the liver- associated symptoms may occur.

Fatigue. Fatigue is a usual indicator of cirrhosis. Several patients with cirrhosis get loss of muscle mass that can upsurge fatigue. Tiredness caused by cirrhosis may be challenging to treat, and it is necessary to seek out other stimulators of fatigue may be unlinked to liver disease.

Itching. Itching is another symptom of known of cirrhosis. Itching results from bile duct abnormality but itching can happen in any liver disease. Patients with itching symptom happen over a considerable portion of their body that is usually severe.

Edema is the retaining of irregular volumes of fluid in the body, most regularly in the legs.

Ascites. When substantial fluid retention happens in the abdomen, this is known as ascites. Ascites can lead to abdominal distress and shortness of breath when the volume of fluids is sizeable to confine the standard expansion of the chest during breathing.

Digestive Tract Bleeding: patients with cirrhosis can enlarge unusually expanded veins within the digestive system. Varices do not lead to symptoms unless they rift and bleed. Bleeding varices can be recognized by the vomiting of coffee-ground-like substance, or blood or the channeling of maroon or black, tarry stools.

Jaundice is a yellow tint of the skin and white of the eyes. Deepening of the urine and pale stool frequently happens prior to the yellow tinting of the skin and whitening of the eyes

Patients with cirrhosis can have symptoms of mental slowing down, excess tiredness and slurring of speech, confusion, a condition called hepatic

Complications of Cirrhosis

Since the liver conducts several multifaceted metabolic functions, there are various complications which arise from cirrhosis. Moreover, some difficulties develop more commonly in particular diseases which leading cirrhosis. Several most common difficulties of liver disease are Ascites, Varices, Hepatic Encephalopathy, and, Liver Cancer (Hepatocellular Carcinoma).

How Cirrhosis is diagnosed

Cirrhosis is well realized by inspecting a modest liver flesh below the microscope; this process is known as biopsy of the liver. In such comparatively simple process a tinny needle is introduced, underneath native anesthesia, keen on the liver then eliminates a minor part of liver flesh. Liver biopsy checks the existence of cirrhosis as well as providing information on the cause too. In several circumstances, a liver biopsy might not be essential to recognize cirrhosis. Regularly, a physician can be capable of identifying cirrhosis through the existence of alterations well-known all through the physical investigation unruffled with the outcomes got from the blood examinations, current studies like ultrasound and endoscopy (Yabluchanskyet al 2017).There are numerous original examinations that practice ultrasound and MRI to straight ration the difficulty of the liver that can help in identifying cirrhosis; however; these examinations are not very extensively available.

Treatments for Cirrhosis

Medical care to a patient with cirrhosis has the following objectives: treating the primary origin of the liver, preventing associated complicated to the disease, and treating the pointers of cirrhosis. Patient with cirrhosis desires long-term medical care with a specialist due to the chronic nature of the disease. Whenever possible, the root cause of cirrhosis should be dealing with. Some conditions enhance with medical therapy and treatment can advance or delay deteriorating of the function of the liver. Under some specific requirements, patients may not withstand treatments for their core liver ailment since their situation is out of hand. Patients with chronic cirrhosis should not consume alcohol often. A doctor may propose various treatments targeting at preventing difficulties of cirrhosis from advancing. Infection is a significant cause of illness in patients with cirrhosis, and a physician may recommend updating their patient vaccinations. Patient with cirrhosis should access the annual flu (influenza) vaccine and pneumonia vaccine. A doctor will be needed to conduct a test on hepatitis A and hepatitis B and vaccinate vulnerable patient. Furthermore, the following prescriptions may be recommended to assist manage symptoms from the impediments of cirrhosis. These entails:

Dietary salt constraint and diuretic medications are recommended for the management of ascites and edema.

Patients who experienced previous incidents of unstructured bacterial peritonitis are provided lengthy antibiotic medication to avert imminent occurrences.

Different medications may be given to patients with hepatic encephalopathy. These comprise of lactulose and/or oral antibiotics. In sporadic circumstances, dietary protein restraint may be prescribed.

In conclusion, cirrhosis can be managed by reduction of daily intake of alcohol, maintenance of weight, minimize the risk of hepatitis, and, eating a healthy diet.


Yabluchansky, M., Bogun, L., Martymianova, L., Bychkova, O., Lysenko, N., & Brynza, M. (2017). Cirrhosis of the Liver. Retrieved from:

Mansour-Ghanaei, F., Mehrdad, M., Mortazavi, S., Joukar, F., Khak, M., & Atrkar-Roushan, Z. (2015). Decreased serum total T3 level in hepatitis B and C related cirrhosis by severity of liver damage. Annals of hepatology, 11(5), 667-671.retrieved from:

Purohit, V., Russo, D., & Salin, M. (2003). Role of iron in alcoholic liver disease: introduction and summary of the symposium. Alcohol, 30(2), 93-97.retrieved from:

Yang, A. M., Inamine, T., Hochrath, K., Chen, P., Wang, L., Llorente, C., ... & Kisseleva, T. (2017). Intestinal fungi contribute to development of alcoholic liver disease. The Journal of clinical investigation, 127(7), 2829-2841. Retrieved from: 10.1172/JCI90562

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