Ascites Topic Guide
Ascites: Ascites is an accumulation of fluid in the peritoneal cavity (abdominal cavity). The primary cause of ascites is liver disease such as cirrhosis, acute liver failure (Tylenol, acetaminophen overdose), Budd-Chiari syndrome, and cancer. Other causes of ascites include congestive heart failure, nephrotic syndrome, pancreatic disorders, diseases of the ovary, hypothyroidism, and direct irritation of the peritoneum. Symptoms of ascites abdominal pain, shortness of breath, easy bruising, and edema (swelling). Treatment for ascites depends on the cause.
Cirrhosis Cirrhosis is a scarring of the liver over a long period, causing the liver to lose its function, which is primarily to filter toxins, aid digestion. Cirrhosis can be caused by a number of factors, often a hepatitis infection or chronic alcohol abuse. Some medications are prescribed to releive symptoms. Liver transplantation is the only curative treatment for advanced cirrhosis.