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What Causes Cirrhosis of the Liver?
Cirrhosis can be caused by a number of conditions, including long-standing inflammation, poisons, infections, and heart disease, as well as chronic alcoholism and chronic hepatitis, the most common causes. For 30-50 percent of cirrhosis cases, however, no cause can be found. Often, the progress toward liver failure is slow and gradual. There is no cure for cirrhosis, but removing the cause can slow the sidease. If the damage is not too devere, the liver can heal itself over time.
Chronic alcoholism: Alcohol can poison all living cells, causing liver cells to become inflamed and die.
Hepatitis: Hepatitis means inflammation of the liver from any cause, but it usually refers to a viral infection of the liver.
Biliary cirrhosis: Bile is a substance produced by the liver to help the body digest fats.
Nonalcoholic fatty liver: This is a condition in which fat builds up in the liver, eventually causing scar tissue to form.
Inherited diseases: A variety of genetic diseases can damage the liver.
Drugs, toxins, and infections: Various substances and germs can cause damage to the liver.
Cardiac cirrhosis: Your heart is a pump that pushes blood throughout your body. When your heart doesn't pump well, blood "backs up" into the liver.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 9/15/2017
Jeffrey A Gunter, MD
Steven L Bernstein, MD
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