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An Overview of Cirrhosis Symptoms and Treatment

Dr. Soloman Shah MD

Board certified in gastroenterology and internal medicine, Dr. Soloman Shah MD currently practices at Gastrointestinal Medicine Associates P.C. in Reston, Virginia. Dr. Soloman Shah specializes in diagnosing and treating liver disorders such as cirrhosis.

Cirrhosis refers to heavy scarring of the liver, often caused by diseases such as hepatitis and long-term alcoholism. Although some scarring of the liver can be mostly asymptomatic, a high level of scar tissue can prevent the liver from carrying out its normal functions of cleaning the blood and manufacturing key nutrients.
Symptoms of advanced cirrhosis include fatigue, bleeding or bruising easily, yellowing of the skin and eyes, swelling in the legs, and slurred speech. People with cirrhosis are also at greater risk of infections and bone disease, as well as liver cancer and organ failure.
Treatment for cirrhosis often focuses on treating alcohol dependency, which represents one of the most common causes of the disease. Certain medications can slow the progression of cirrhosis, reduce additional harm to liver cells, and control the symptoms of the disease. If preliminary treatments become ineffective, a liver transplant may be recommended.

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