Liver failure can be chronic (long term) or acute (sudden onset).
Acute liver failure
Acute liver failure is usually associated with exposure to
- Drug induced
- Metabolic diseases
- Viral causes
The rapid onset of liver failure is often due to necrosis.
Chronic liver diseases include:
- Cholestatic jaundice
- Chronic viral hepatitis
- Autoimmune chronic hepatitis
- Alcoholic liver disease
- Vascular diseases
- Veno-occlusive disorder
- Wilson?s disease
- Alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency
- Reye?s syndrome
- Cystic fibrosis
Symptoms and signs
- Uncontrollable Encephalopathy
- Relentless Ascites
- Portal Hypertension (high blood pressure in the liver vessels)
- Formation of varices
- Hepatorenal syndrome
- Hepatopulmonary syndrome
- Poor liver function demonstrated in changes shown in blood tests
- Vomiting of blood, bloody or black stools (liver disease may cause intestinal bleeding)
- Severe and uncontrollable generalized itching
- Tumor confined to the liver
Acute liver failure is treated in an intensive care unit with aggressive supportive measures. Chronic liver failure may require liver transplantation.
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