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Sunday, July 10, 2011

Cirrhosis of Liver - Signs and symptoms

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Cirrhosis (pronounced /sɪˈroʊsɪs/) is a consequence of chronic liver disease characterized by replacement of liver tissue by fibrosis, scar tissue and regenerative nodules (lumps that occur as a result of a process in which damaged tissue is regenerated), leading to loss of liver function. Cirrhosis is most commonly caused by alcoholism, hepatitis B and C, and fatty liver disease, but has many other possible causes. Some cases are idiopathic, i.e., of unknown cause.

Ascites (fluid retention in the abdominal cavity) is the most common complication of cirrhosis, and is associated with a poor quality of life, increased risk of infection, and a poor long-term outcome. Other potentially life-threatening complications are hepatic encephalopathy (confusion and coma) and bleeding from esophageal varices. Cirrhosis is generally irreversible, and treatment usually focuses on preventing progression and complications. In advanced stages of cirrhosis the only option is a liver transplant.

The word "cirrhosis" derives from Greek κιρρός [kirrhós] meaning yellowish, tawny (the orange-yellow colour of the diseased liver) + Eng. med. suff. -osis. While the clinical entity was known before, it was René Laennec who gave it the name "cirrhosis" in his 1819 work in which he also describes the stethoscope.

Signs and symptoms

Some of the following signs and symptoms may occur in the presence of cirrhosis or as a result of the complications of cirrhosis. Many are nonspecific and may occur in other diseases and do not necessarily point to cirrhosis. Likewise, the absence of any does not rule out the possibility of cirrhosis.

Spider angiomata or spider nevi. Vascular lesions consisting of a central arteriole surrounded by many smaller vessels because of an increase in estradiol. These occur in about 1/3 of cases.

Palmar erythema. Exaggerations of normal speckled mottling of the palm, because of altered sex hormone metabolism.

Nail changes.
Muehrcke's lines - paired horizontal bands separated by normal color resulting from hypoalbuminemia (inadequate production of albumin).
Terry's nails - proximal two-thirds of the nail plate appears white with distal one-third red, also due to hypoalbuminemia
Clubbing - angle between the nail plate and proximal nail fold > 180 degrees
Hypertrophic osteoarthropathy. Chronic proliferative periostitis of the long bones that can cause considerable pain.
Dupuytren's contracture. Thickening and shortening of palmar fascia that leads to flexion deformities of the fingers. Thought to be caused by fibroblastic proliferation and disorderly collagen deposition. It is relatively common (33% of patients).

Gynecomastia. Benign proliferation of glandular tissue of male breasts presenting with a rubbery or firm mass extending concentrically from the nipples. This is caused by increased estradiol and can occur in up to 66% of patients.
Hypogonadism. Manifested as impotence, infertility, loss of sexual drive, and testicular atrophy because of primary gonadal injury or suppression of hypothalamic or pituitary function.

Liver size. Can be enlarged, normal, or shrunken.

Splenomegaly (increase in size of the spleen). Caused by congestion of the red pulp as a result of portal hypertension.
Ascites. Accumulation of fluid in the peritoneal cavity giving rise to flank dullness (needs about 1500 mL to detect flank dullness).

Caput medusa. In portal hypertension, the umbilical vein may open. Blood from the portal venous system may be shunted through the periumbilical veins into the umbilical vein and ultimately to the abdominal wall veins, manifesting as caput medusa.

Cruveilhier-Baumgarten murmur. Venous hum heard in epigastric region (on examination by stethoscope) because of collateral connections between portal system and the remnant of the umbilical vein in portal hypertension.
Fetor hepaticus. Musty odor in breath as a result of increased dimethyl sulfide.

Jaundice. Yellow discoloring of the skin, eye, and mucus membranes because of increased bilirubin (at least 2–3 mg/dL or 30 mmol/L). Urine may also appear dark.

Asterixis. Bilateral asynchronous flapping of outstretched, dorsiflexed hands seen in patients with hepatic encephalopathy.

Other. Weakness, fatigue, anorexia, weight loss.

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2 comments:

Meredith Gopperr said...

Cirrhosis wide unfold destruction of the liver of the in-patient. The disorders cannot curable at later time it's going to be curable at the sooner time of the affected livers. there's medical care for that liver disease to place it simply liver disease treatment we'd decision it and it's referred to as as YHK medical care
cirrhosis treatment

Anonymous said...

My father has Liver Cirrohsis as detectedin July 2013. All doctors suggesting that its a Crypogenic Liver Cirrhosis. Please help.
Is Hepatetic B vaccination must for him?

Thank you
Rakesh Bhavsar
rakesh.57446@gmail.com
INDIA

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