Sometimes referred to as an end-stage liver disease, cirrhosis of the liver is a chronic disease that disturbs the liver in its natural functioning. It damages the tissues of the liver and if the damages are left untreated, the liver fails to carry out its normal functions. There are many factors that cause cirrhosis of the liver. Chronic alcohol abuse, hepatitis or the inflammation of the liver, biliary cirrhosis, autoimmune cirrhosis, nonalcoholic fatty liver, an inherrited disease like Wilsons’s disease, deficiency of alpha-1 antitrypsin, cystic fibrosis, hemochromatosis, galactosemia; toxins, drugs and infections and cardiac cirrhosis etc are the main causes of cirrhosis of the liver.
The cirrhosis patients may or may not have symptoms. Yellowing of the skin because of the buildup of bilirubin inside the blood, weakness, fatigue, itching, loss of appetite, and easy bruising etc are some common signs that are indicative of cirrhosis of the liver.
There are various ways through which cirrhosis of the liver is diagnosed. A blood test is done to find out if the liver is working normally. CT scan Ultrasound or radioisotope scan is conducted to see the signs of cirrhosis on the surface of the liver. A laparoscope is used to view the liver directly and liver biopsy detects the fibrosis and scarring in the liver.