Certain diseases can affect your liver and possibly be fatal without the proper treatment. Some of these diseases often have no early symptoms but can still harm the liver as they gradually progress. Here are four potentially deadly diseases that affect the liver.
The hepatitis virus can cause the liver to become inflamed and diminish its function. The various strains include hepatitis A, B, C, D and E. Some people can also get alcoholic hepatitis if they consume large amounts of alcohol regularly. The disease is also classified as acute or chronic, and some forms can be naturally cleared from the body. There are also treatments, such as those offered by Med Embassy, that can effectively cure certain hepatitis strains. You may get hepatitis by consuming contaminated drinking water or eating tainted food. Certain forms can also be transmitted through sexual contact or intravenous drug use. Common symptoms of hepatitis include yellowing of the skin and eyes (jaundice), nausea, fatigue and dark-colored urine.
Cirrhosis of the liver usually progresses slowly and can cause serious harm without showing any initial symptoms. Scar tissue on the liver grows in place of healthy tissue, which can greatly compromise the liver’s function. This condition often occurs because of excessive alcohol consumption but may also be the result of hepatitis, having a fatty liver or bile duct blockage. Symptoms may include diminished appetite, fluid retention (edema) and jaundice. Some people with this condition also experience energy loss and feelings of confusion. Blood tests and a liver biopsy may be needed to accurately diagnose this disease. A cure for cirrhosis currently does not exist, but the condition can be managed with various medications.
Cancerous tumors that derive from liver cells can eventually cause other tumors to form in different parts of the body. Some of the most common types of liver cancer include hepatocellular carcinoma, hepatoblastoma and intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma. Although it is sometimes difficult to determine an exact cause of liver cancer, individuals with hepatitis and gene mutations are at greater risk. Individuals with liver cancer may experience symptoms like unexplained weight loss, pain in the upper abdomen and abdominal swelling. Although it is not always possible to cure liver cancer, surgery to remove any tumors or a liver transplant may be effective. Other possible treatment options include freezing or heating the cancer cells, chemotherapy and radiation.
This heredity condition causes the body to retain too much iron and is known to lead to liver damage if left untreated. The body stores too much iron that is consumed with food, and much of this excessive iron is stored within the liver. Hemochromatosis is a rare genetic condition that usually does not start to have serious adverse effects until a person reaches midlife. If you were born with this condition, you may eventually start to notice symptoms like joint pain, muscle weakness and unusual fatigue. One of the best ways to treat hemochromatosis is to have regular blood draws to lower the body’s iron levels.
If you end up suffering from any of these liver conditions, there may be hope. Seeking the appropriate treatments early can help prevent some of these diseases from getting much worse and may potentially save your life.