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World Liver Day 2024: Here's why liver disease happens, know tips for prevention

The world is observing World Liver Day 2024 today. Thus, here in the below-mentioned article, we have shared expert inputs wherein it has been elaborated on why liver disease happens and how to prevent it from happening.

Written By : Health Desk Edited By : Kristina Das
New Delhi
Updated on: April 22, 2024 10:03 IST
World Liver Day 2024
Image Source : FREEPIK Know why liver disease happens and also learn prevention tips.

Liver disease is due to several causes. These can be assigned as Acute or Chronic liver diseases. Acute liver disease has usually severe manifestations, may be self-limited and lasts days to a few weeks. Examples of Acute liver disease are viral hepatitis or drug-induced hepatitis. In chronic liver disease, inflammation in the liver goes on for more than six months. Classical examples of chronic liver disease are cirrhosis of the liver, primary biliary cholangitis, and Budd-Chiari syndrome. Most of the liver diseases occur due to various mechanisms. Substance abuse (alcohol), viral diseases (Hepatitis A virus, B virus, C virus, D virus, E virus] metabolic disorders, and drug-induced, Insulin Resistance could be some causes.

According to Dr B. Ravi Shankar, HOD Gastroenterology, Yashoda Hospitals Hyderabad, prevention of liver disease is based on understanding the aetiology of the liver disease. Basic understanding is stopping alcohol abuse, prevention of viral infections with vaccination against B virus and A virus; and approaching and getting hold of proper medical advice in various other conditions. It could also be understood that the symptoms of liver disease may not manifest until the disease has advanced to a severe stage. Hence, a need for screening modalities like performing liver function tests, ultrasound abdomen, checking for B virus and C virus and fibroscan.

Alcohol has become a very commonly consumed commodity but it should be understood that consuming more than 50 grams per day regularly causes significant liver disease. Over all adequate respect needs to be given to the liver and keep it going.

One of the most common liver diseases that is seen nowadays is Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. It is a lifestyle disorder due to a sedentary lifestyle, overeating, lack of exercise and obesity or being overweight. NAFLD can progress to cirrhosis of the liver in about < 5 % of cases who have this disorder, but the disease is seen in 40% of the adult population, making it one of the important indications of liver transplantation or liver-related morbidity in future. This emphasizes the need to maintain body weight and regular exercise to prevent this disease. 

Drug-induced liver disease (DILI) is also a major player and may be caused during the treatment of several diseases. It needs prompt identification and drug withdrawal to ameliorate the condition.

So, overall prevention of liver disease includes stopping abuse of alcohol, regular exercise, cutting down on extra body weight, getting vaccinated for A & B virus; and a prompt attempt to reach the specialist at the onset of jaundice or any symptoms that seem to be liver-related.

ALSO READ: World Liver Day 2024: Expert explains the link between fatty liver and cancer risk

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