Alcoholic Liver Disease: Symptoms, Risk Factors, Treatment And Causes

Alcoholic Liver Disease

Alcoholic liver disease is caused as a result of over-consumption of alcohol which damages the liver, hence leading to a build-up of fats, scarring as well as inflammation. Alcoholic liver disease is considered to be fatal in nature and requires immediate medical attention.

This condition is also considered to be a primary cause of chronic liver disease in all the western countries. In most of the cases, the alcoholic liver disease could also lead to liver failure which eventually increases the chances of liver transplant in India.


The symptoms of alcoholic liver disease are very much recognizable when the problem begins to progress. This condition includes the following symptoms:

  1. Yellowing of the eyes and skin or jaundice
  2. Swelling of the lower limbs or edema
  3. Extremely itchy skin
  4. Fever and shivering
  5. Losing weight rapidly
  6. Finger-nails which start curving excessively
  7. General weakness as well as wasting muscles
  8. Blood in the stools and vomit
  9. Bleeding and bruising very easily
  10. More sensitive reactions to drugs as well as alcohol.


Alcoholic liver disease can cause liver failure and hence it is very important to avoid the problem. The main cause of this disease mainly includes the excessive consumption of alcohol on the part of a person. Furthermore, other factors also add to the problem.

  1. The process of the body of breaking down alcohol and producing highly toxic chemicals
  2. The chemicals start triggering inflammation, thereby the destruction of the liver cells.
  3. Scars that replace healthy liver tissue and interfere with the smooth functioning of the liver
  4. Irreversible scarring or cirrhosis which is also considered to be the final stage of alcoholic liver disease.
  5. Alcohol consumption especially when you are suffering from hepatitis C.

Risk factors:

The major risk factor of the problem is nothing but the amount of alcohol that you consume over time. Most of the people suffering from this condition have a history of the consumption of more than 3.5 ounces of alcohol which is equivalent to seven glasses of wine, seven shots of spirit as well as seven beers – daily for a period of 20 years.

Other risk factors of the disease include the following:

  1. Women are always at a higher risk of developing a problem if compared to men.
  2. Heavy drinkers who are suffering from obesity are more likely to develop the problem.
  3. Some genetic factors contribute to the problem according to the studies.
  4. Blacks, as well as Hispanics, are always at a higher risk of developing the disease.
  5. Consumption of five or more drinks within a period of two hours for men and four or more drinks for women increases the risk of alcoholic hepatitis, thereby causing liver failure.


The treatment of alcoholic hepatitis involves quitting the consumption of alcohol in the first place so that the signs and symptoms of the problem could be relieved. Apart from it, several therapies are also given to a person to get rid of the problem. The treatment of this disease includes the following:

  1. Medication
  2. Counseling
  3. Outpatient or residential treatment program
  4. Alcoholics or other support groups.

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