Friday, February 12, 2016
Common Liver Diseases
Soloman Shah, MD, is a physician at Gastrointestinal Medicine Associates in Fairfax, Virginia. For more than 15 years, Dr. Soloman Shah has focused on treating patients who have liver conditions.
There are more than 100 recognized liver diseases that can impact people of all ages. Some liver conditions, such as liver cancer and fatty liver disease, are linked to external factors like chronic alcoholism and obesity. Viruses such as hepatitis A, B, and C are common and can have devastating effects on the liver. Hepatitis A spreads through contaminated food and water, while hepatitis B and C are transmitted through bodily fluids. Vaccines exist for hepatitis A and B, but not for the C strain of the virus. In severe cases, a person with hepatitis C may require a liver transplant.
Cirrhosis is another common liver ailment. It typically stems from the damage caused by viral hepatitis, chronic alcoholism, or other existing liver conditions. The effects of these diseases can cause the liver to develop blockages that reduce blood flow and impede metabolic processes. There are a range of treatments for cirrhosis that vary according to its severity and root cause.