What Are Some Diseases Of The Liver – According to an analysis published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 4.5 million Americans were diagnosed with liver disease in 2018. And in one year, liver disease claimed the lives of more than 42,000 people. human beings.
A separate study published by MarketWatch, a financial information website that provides business news, analysis and stock market data, shows that the number of deaths related to chronic liver disease has increased each year since 2000, mostly affecting those between the ages of 45 and 64.
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Let’s put this into context. The study began from 2000 to 2015. In the end, it appeared that the number of deaths among people in this age group with liver disease increased by 31%.
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Now we have an understanding of the population as it relates to liver disease. So let’s take a closer look at the role of the liver when it comes to overall health.
The liver is an important organ. It sits above the gallbladder and works with the pancreas and large intestine to process, absorb and digest food. More than that, it helps to remove toxins from the body and also to process medicines, which it does by filtering the blood from the digestive tract before it passes through the rest of the body. All in all, this organ is responsible for several important functions in the body that predict health.
There are many different things that can cause liver disease, commonly called liver disease. In most cases, however, viral hepatitis is the most common cause, as the disease is known to cause the liver to become enlarged and infected. Some of the common types of viral hepatitis that can lead to liver disease include
Hepatitis A – This type of viral infection can be caused by consumption of food or drinks that contain fecal matter or other dangerous toxins. Hepatitis A is more common in restaurants where people responsible for preparing and cooking food do not wash their hands. While hepatitis A is usually asymptomatic and clears up on its own after six months, it can still damage the liver.
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Hepatitis B – This type of viral infection is often caused by sharing water with others, such as having unprotected sex or sharing contaminated needles while using drugs.
Hepatitis C – This type of viral infection occurs when infected blood enters the bloodstream, which is common among those who use drugs and share hypodermic bees. However, it is important to note that those who work in healthcare are also at risk of contact with infected needles. Also worth noting, hepatitis C symptoms often do not appear for years. As such, the infection can seriously damage the hepatic organ, even if there are no symptoms.
Along with viral hepatitis, there is significant evidence that other autoimmune disorders can also lead to liver-related diseases, some of which include the following:
Autoimmune hepatitis – This autoimmune disease is known to cause inflammation in the hepatic organ and can lead to organ failure if left untreated. On a side note, autoimmune hepatitis is more common in women than men.
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Primary biliary cholangitis – Also more common in women than men, primary biliary cholangitis is an autoimmune disease that blocks ducts in the hepatic organ that secrete bile to digest food. If these channels are blocked, the bile will damage the hepatic organ and cause one of the many diseases related to the liver.
Primary sclerosing cholangitis – This autoimmune disorder not only blocks the bile ducts in the hepatic organ, but also makes them overactive. To further complicate matters, when bile gets stuck in the organ, it can cause it to become blocked, leading to a higher chance of developing liver-related cancer. Unlike autoimmune hepatitis and primary biliary cholangitis, men are more likely to develop primary sclerosing cholangitis than women.
Along with autoimmune disorders and viral hepatitis, overweight or obesity can cause liver-related diseases. This also applies to excessive alcohol consumption, which can cause cirrhosis and eventually lead to organ failure. In some cases, diseases related to the liver can be down to genetics. According to an article published by the Mayo Clinic, a non-profit medical center based in Minnesota, an abnormal gene inherited from one or both parents can greatly increase the chances of one of the following liver-related diseases due to the accumulation of toxins in the organ:
Although medicines are designed to improve your health, some of them can have various side effects. For example, Tylenol and other medications that contain acetaminophen can damage the liver if taken in excess. That said, if you’re taking acetaminophen to relieve chronic pain and you’re worried about developing liver disease, it might be a good idea to talk to your doctor about switching to another medication.
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For those who may not be familiar with non-alcoholic steatohepatitis, the condition causes the hepatic organ to become scarred and inflamed. Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis occurs when the hepatic organ is filled with excess fat, damaged cells or other harmful substances. Along with causing inflammation and scarring to the hepatic organ, non-alcoholic steatohepatitis also increases the risk of developing various types of liver-related diseases. Some of the health problems that can contribute to non-alcoholic steatohepatitis include
It is important to note that this list does not represent all conditions that can lead to non-alcoholic steatohepatitis; In addition, it is a list of the most common causes of liver disease.
Although it may take time to see, the symptoms of serious liver diseases are difficult to miss, and you should see a doctor immediately if you start to experience any of them. That said, some of the more common symptoms include
Although these symptoms may not always indicate liver disease, they should not be ignored. This is especially true for those who may experience symptoms commonly associated with liver cancer. One such is green colored stool, which is a sign that the body is no longer able to remove toxins from the body. The earlier a doctor diagnoses and treats liver cancer, the greater your chances of survival. To further illustrate this point, the five-year survival rate for liver-related cancer that has not spread to other parts of the body is 31 percent, according to the American Cancer Society.
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Many agree that liver disease can seriously affect a person’s health. However, you can do several things to reduce your chances of developing this serious health problem. Mainly, it comes down to limiting your exposure to toxins and making better lifestyle choices. Some of those improvements include the following.
Do you think you may already have one of the types of hepatitis described in this article? Then talk to your doctor immediately. They develop a management plan to reduce other liver-related injuries. They may even reduce the risk of developing liver-related cancer.
All in all, diseases related to the liver can seriously affect your health. The consequences become serious if they are not treated for a long time. So what is the best way to reduce your chances of developing one of these diseases? Start by making healthy lifestyle changes. And schedule an appointment with your doctor if you see any of the early warning signs.
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