Cirrhosis is a condition of the liver which is characterized by the scarring of the liver tissue. Once the liver tissue is scarred, the unaffected and normal liver tissue reduces in volume causing several other problems.
The liver plays a very important role in maintaining the metabolism of the body through digestion and also maintains the levels of hormones. It regulates the hormone functions in the body.Damage to the liver is caused mainly by alcohol, smoking, and some conditions like hepatitis B and C. However, once the scarring of liver tissue begins, it starts to advance very slowly and increases the volume of scarred tissue.
Cirrhosis usually produces no symptoms until the damage has become very severe. Some of the early symptoms may include easy bruising and weight gain or severe weight loss. However, these symptoms coincide with several other conditions. So, it becomes very difficult to diagnose the condition in the beginning. If the scar is mild, then it can be replaced by body tissue, but not when it is severe. The person suffering from this condition also becomes prone to infections. Cirrhosis can be treated using medications that control the symptoms. A liver transplant may be the ultimate treatment for the patient.
Cirrhosis is not a condition that occurs overnight nor do the symptoms develop suddenly. It is a gradual process and conditions that progress slowly over a few years. Over a period of time, the symptoms become so severe that the liver ceases functions. The effects of cirrhosis cannot be reversed, but a person can control the progress of the disease through medications.
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