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Forum Name: Liver Diseases

Question: Drinking Assessment


 brooklynboro - Sat Jun 12, 2010 10:13 pm

Doctor,
A healthy disease free 25 year old male began drinking at age 21. He is not a heavy drinker, though, has binged on occasion. He can recall 7 times in his life which he was drunk enough to experience a hangover, morning shakes, and vomiting.
Recently, he abstained from drinking for several months and being more mature, lately he decided to limit himself to a glass of wine or beer with dinner. Can he continue this casual drinking 'regimen' for years to come with little to worry about? What would be a good way of determining where he stands today? Regards
 Faye Lang, RN, MSW - Thu Jul 08, 2010 12:44 am

Hello, brooklynboro,

Your description of your friend indicates that he does not have known liver disease or alcohol dependence. The liver is a complex and very busy organ, with many functions. It detoxifies substances introduced into the body, including alcohol and medications among many others. It helps make amino acids to build protein, as well as both forming glucose and breaking down glucose, it makes cholesterol and triglycerides, participates in several mechanisms affecting blood proteins and clotting factors, produces bile which is needed for the digestion of fats, and provides storage. Overusage of substances will make the liver work harder, whether it is alcohol, tylenol, fat, or any number of other things. Thus, if your friend or other person is moderate in the ingestion of these things, the outlook is good that he will maintain healthy liver function. If he has any doubts or concerns, please refer him to his doctor for evaluation and further information. I hope this is helpful. Good luck to him, and to you.

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