What are the first signs of liver damage from alcohol?

Alcoholism may have a significant impact on a person’s overall health. It may have a significant impact on general health and lifespan. Long durations of high alcohol consumption have been related to brain and nervous system disorders, vitamin deficits, and other problems. The most well-known complication of long-term alcohol intake is liver damage.

Alcoholic liver disease is a chronic illness that causes fatty liver, chronic hepatitis, fibrosis (scarring), and cirrhosis. Acute involvement can produce life-threatening liver cirrhosis. Patients with Liver disease can consult a liver disease specialist at the Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital

Why is your liver so important?

The liver is the most important organ in the human body after the brain, located on the right side of the abdomen, above the ribs (abdomen). Performing over 500 activities such as:

  • making proteins to prevent infection and sickness
  • removing poisons from the blood
  • producing hormones, proteins, and other essential chemicals
  • controlling blood cholesterol and blood sugar levels
  • Protein’s production enables blood clotting post an injury
  • Stores sugar for the body to use as energy

If your liver is damaged, it can have a devastating effect on the rest of your body. 


What are the types of alcoholic liver disease?

Alcoholic liver damage is widespread, yet it is treatable. There are three kinds of alcoholic liver diseases. Many alcohols addict or heavy drinkers pass through these three stages:

  • Fatty Liver – Fatty liver is the excess fat inside the liver cells. It causes an enlargement of the liver. It is the most frequent type of alcohol-related liver problem.
  • Alcoholic Hepatitis – Alcoholic hepatitis is severe liver inflammation. Liver cells die, which is usually followed by persistent damage.
  • Alcoholic Cirrhosis – The destruction of normal liver tissue is caused by alcoholic cirrhosis. It replaces healthy liver tissue with damaged tissue.


What are the early signs & symptoms of alcoholic liver disease?

How much and how long a person is drinking alcohol affects the liver directly. Below are the most common signs and symptoms for alcoholic liver disease: 

Fatty liver –

  • Often causes no symptoms.
  • A build-up of fat inside the liver cells enlarges the liver, causing discomfort on the right side of the upper abdominal (belly).
  • Tiredness and weakness
  • Weight loss

Alcoholic hepatitis –

  • Pain over the liver
  • Fever
  • Weakness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Appetite loss
  • Yellowing of the skin and eyes (jaundice)

Alcoholic cirrhosis –

  • Portal hypertension (increase in blood flow resistance)
  • Enlarged spleen
  • Poor nutrition
  • Bleeding in the intestines
  • Ascites (fluid build-up in the belly)
  • Kidney failure
  • Confusion
  • Liver cancer

A lot of alcoholic liver disease symptoms match other health problems. Always see a gastro & liver specialist for a diagnosis & treatment. 


What are the symptoms of alcoholic liver disease?

A liver disease specialist will complete a detailed health history and physical examination. Other tests that are performed to determine alcohol-induced liver damage include:

  • Blood tests – The doctor may perform a blood test to detect whether the liver functions normally.
  • Liver Biopsy – This involves collecting tiny tissue samples from the liver with a needle or during surgery. These samples are examined under a microscope to determine the kind of liver illness.
  • Ultrasound – High-frequency sound waves are used to create an organ’s image.
  •  CT scan – A computed tomography imaging test uses X-rays and a computer to generate pictures (commonly referred to as slices). A CT scan provides comprehensive pictures of any part of the body, such as the bones, muscles, fat, and organs. CT scans produce more descriptive imaging than standard X-rays.
  • MRI – A magnetic field, radiofrequency pulses, and a computer are commonly used in MRI for detailed images of inside body structures. Dye is sometimes injected into a vein to create pictures of bodily components. The dye aids in imaging the liver and other organs in the abdomen (belly).

What treatment options are available for liver disease?

If a person is diagnosed with alcohol-induced liver disease, the first thing they should do is stop drinking completely. Below are available treatment options

  • Getting healthy can aid in the treatment of alcohol-induced liver damage. Exercising, decreasing weight, and quitting smoking have all been proven to aid in the recovery of early stages of alcoholic liver disease. Supplements, such as a multivitamin may also be beneficial.
  • Medication is frequently recommended to relieve some of the discomfort associated with the symptoms of alcoholic liver disease. Steroids are used to reduce inflammation, probiotics and antibiotics are given, and stem cell treatments are employed in some situations.
  • A transplant is required when an alcoholic liver disease has destroyed the liver entirely. A liver transplant might be difficult in situations of alcohol-induced liver failure.


Prevention of Alcoholic Liver Disease – 

Everyone, despite risk factors, may take action to protect their liver against alcohol damage. These are all crucial, and focusing on one or two will not suffice.

To be effective, they must all be recognized and followed. Even a single day of excessive drinking can produce fatty liver and impair its functions.

  • Maintain a Healthy Diet – If you eat a good, nutritious diet, your liver will be able to do its job better and metabolize the poisons in alcohol more efficiently. Develop a healthy eating plan with the help of a dietitian
  • Drinking alcohol within healthy limits – The best way to protect your liver is to drink in moderation or fully avoid it. Even minor liver illness requires complete abstention for a period to let the body heal.

Men should limit their alcohol intake to two drinks each day. Women should only have one. Pregnant women, those recovering from alcoholism, and anyone on drugs that interact with alcohol should not drink.

  • Exercise – Being overweight is one of the leading causes of fatty liver and the resulting inflammation and scarring. Exercising keeps your body in condition and allows it to metabolize alcohol properly.

The conclusion – A person’s liver health is critical to his or her overall health. Alcohol is one of the worst habits that can damage the liver in mild, moderate, or severe ways, needing a liver transplant. Limitation in alcohol usage is the best way to maintain healthy physical and mental health.

Educate any of your loved ones who have a drinking problem about the dangers it brings to their liver. And if they have any early signs and symptoms, it is high time to take strict action for their health. You can see a Hepatologists at Kokilaben Hospital for diseased liver treatment. You can find the doctor list of Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital on Credihealth.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *