Liver Cirrhosis




Cirrhosis is a chronic degenerative disease in which normal liver cells are damaged and are then replaced by scar tissue.

Cirrhosis is a progressive disease, developing slowly over many years. If it is allowed to continue, the build-up of scar tissue can eventually stop liver function (liver failure).


Common causes of cirrhosis are:

Long-term alcohol abuse

Hepatitis B and C infection

Fatty liver disease

Toxic metals

Genetic diseases

Of those, hepatitis B and C together are said to be the leading cause of cirrhosis. We will take a look at each of these causes in detail below.


Symptoms are not common during the early stages of cirrhosis. However, as scar tissue accumulates, the liver's ability to function properly is undermined. The following signs and symptoms may occur:

Blood capillaries become visible on the skin on the upper abdomen.



itchy skin

loss of appetite

loss of bodyweight


pain or tenderness in the area where the liver is located

red or blotchy palms


The following signs and symptoms may appear as liver cirrhosis progresses:

Abdomen fills up with fluid, giving the patient a large tummy (ascites).

accelerated heartbeat

altered personality (as blood toxins build up and affect the brain)

Bleeding gums.

body and upper arms lose mass

body finds it harder to process alcohol

body finds it harder to process drugs



fluid build-up on ankles, feet, and legs (edema)

hair loss

higher susceptibility to bruising

jaundice (yellowing of the skin, whites of the eyes, and tongue)

loss of libido (sex drive)

memory problems

more frequent fevers (susceptibility to infections)

muscle cramps


pain on the right shoulder


Stools become black and tarry, or very pale.

Urine becomes darker.

Vomiting blood.

Walking problems (staggering).