Google Doodle remembers Meena Kumari on her 85th birth anniversary. Meena Kumari, who is popularly known as the 'Tragedy Queen', starred in 92 films which include Pakeezah, Sahib Bibi Aur Ghulam, Parineeta, Baiju Bawra, to name a few.
Weeks after Pakeezah released, Meena Kumari fell seriously ill and was admitted to a nursing home. She died shortly afterwards and the cause of her death is known to be liver cirrhosis.
Here we will explain in detail what is cirrhosis of the liver, causes, diagnosis and treatment.
What Is Liver Cirrhosis?
According to the data published by World Health Organisation (WHO) in 2017, liver disease deaths in India reached 259,749 or 2.95% of total deaths. Liver cirrhosis is the 14th leading cause of death in the world.
Cirrhosis occurs when the healthy cells in the liver are damaged and replaced by scar tissue. It is a serious degenerative disease that usually happens as a result of alcohol abuse or chronic hepatitis and other such causes.
When the healthy cells are replaced by scar tissue, the liver loses its ability to function properly. This can further lead to liver failure and possibly death.
In addition, the scarred tissue slows down the normal flow of blood through the liver, due to which the blood finds alternate pathways like the veins in the stomach and oesophagus to return to the heart.
The liver is one such organ that is tolerant of disease or injury. The liver can still function even if 70 per cent of the mass has been destroyed. If treatment is done correctly, it can bounce back. But, if there is scar tissue in the liver, there is no way that the liver can return to normal.
This is why it's necessary to identify the underlying causes as soon as possible.
Causes of Cirrhosis Of The Liver
According to WebMD, the possible causes of liver cirrhosis are genetic deficiencies, virus, long period of exposure to drugs, and prolonged obstruction of bile flow. In the majority of the cases, excessive alcohol consumption is the primary cause.
Another frequent cause of cirrhosis of the liver is viral hepatitis. Hepatitis B and hepatitis C are the ones that cause this.
Symptoms Of Liver Cirrhosis
These are the symptoms of liver cirrhosis:
- Decreased Appetite
- Nose Bleeds
- Weight Loss
- Spider-shaped arteries under the skin
- Itchy skin
How Is Cirrhosis Of The Liver Diagnosed?
First, the doctor will take your detailed medical history and physical exam. Some tests are done to determine the damage of the liver like complete blood count, liver function tests, albumin, coagulation blood tests, etc. Other tests are also done like an ultrasound of the liver, MRI of the abdomen, CT scan of the abdomen, and liver biopsy.
Treatment For Cirrhosis
Treatment for cirrhosis depends on the cause and to what extent is your liver damaged. To minimize damage to the liver, treating the underlying cause is important.
- Treatment for alcohol dependency - People with cirrhosis caused by alcohol abuse should avoid drinking.
- Weight loss - People suffering with liver cirrhosis caused due to nonalcoholic fatty liver disease may become healthier if they lose weight.
- Medications to control cirrhosis - Some medications may slow down the progression of certain types of liver cirrhosis.
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