The Only Remedy of Chronic Liver Failure is Transplantation
Liver failure which may occur suddenly or develop within years as a result of certain reasons may threaten life if not treated. The process which causes liver failure may not give nany symptoms until all the liver functions are deteriorated. Prof. Dr. Koray Acarlı, who is The Department Chair of Memorial Şişli Hospital Organ Transplantation Centre, gave some information about liver transplantation which is the most effective treatment of liver failure.
The vital organ in body
Liver is the biggest organ of our body. In an adult person, it is 1000-1500 gr in average, depending on the weight. It produces proteins which body needs to sustain life, processes the eaten and absorbed food via intestines and provides energy from these, produces and ensures the flow of the necessary gall for the absorption of fats and fat soluble vitamins of A,D,E and K, executes the synthesis of clotting factors which play an important role in blood clotting, stores some minerals, vitamins and sugar in order not to feel their deficiency, helps to eliminate bacteria in body, fights with infection and pacifies nearly all harmful chemicals which enter into body.
Chronic and Acute liver failure
Liver failure generally occurs with an irremediable damage in a large part of liver and results with loss of necessary functions. It generally threatens life and necessitates an urgent medical support. The frequently encountered situation is the slow deterioration of the diseased liver and development of failure in years, which is named as “chronic liver failure.” Another less frequent situation is development of liver failure in a person with no known liver disease, which is named as “acute liver failure.” So every person in every age may be a liver patient.
Causes and Symptoms
Hepatitis B and C, cirrhosis (may develop as a result of many diseases), extreme usage of alcohol for a long time, blockage in some veins of liver, malnutrition, some biliary tract diseases (primary sclerosant cholangitis), some genetic diseases, hemochromatosis (iron metabolism disorder), alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency and Wilson disease (copper metabolism disorder) causes chronic liver failure. Hepatitis of A, B, C, high dose usage of Acetaminophen (an antifebrile painkiller sold in the market frequently), reactions against some herbal medications cause acute liver failure. Serious feeling of weakness, tiredness, loss of appetite, nausea, throwing up and diarrhea may be the messengers of an important disease like liver failure. Yellowness, swelling in abdomen (oedema), easy bleeding (unexplainable bleedings of nose, gum or simple bodily harm), and somnolence (hepatic encephalopathy: losing sense of time and place, not recognizing close persons, inconsistent behaviour), tendency to sleep and coma situation may be the messengers of a serious stage of the disease.
It is possible to avoid liver failure
It is not really possible to avoid innate and genetic diseases. Avoiding from consanguineous marriage, being careful during pregnancy and having the examinations of the baby in mother womb may give some clues about certain diseases. Apart from these, the most effective ways are to avoid hepatitis (with vaccination) and cirrhosis. An appropriate diet, hygiene, restriction on alcohol intake, not using alcohol with some medications (especially with acetaminophen (Tylenol)), being careful while contacting with blood, not using tools which was contacted with another person’s blood (like razor blades, needles, manicure and pedicure tools), being protected during sexual intercourse, paying attention to tool hygiene when having a tattoo and staying away from wild mushrooms can be counted as protective ways.
When is liver transplant necessary?
In situations of acute liver failure, the issue may be circumvented with intensive medical support if all the liver is not damaged irremediably and time may be earned for the recovery of liver, even a total healing may be succeeded. However the only efficient treatment is LIVER TRANSPLANTATION when it is chronic, that is, irremediable and in case of acute failures which cannot be healed.
Get in touch with liver transplantation centres
Falling or rising of liver values on critical levels, serious yellowness, consistent itchiness, unpreventable bleedings of Varicosis, oedema in abdomen in spite of treatment are the signals which show the time for liver transplant has arrived. When it is time, specialists should lead their patients to a liver transplantation centre as soon as possible. Sometimes only this does not suffice. It is quite important for patients to consult a liver transplantation centre whose success they trust as soon as possible.
Prepared by the Medical Editorial Board. Our health library contents have been prepared for informational purposes only and with the scientific content on the registration date. For all your questions, concerns, diagnosis or treatment about your health, please consult your doctor or health institution.