Symptoms of Alcohol Hepatitis

Published On 11-October-2018
By Tim Wood

Drinking alcohol puts a lot of unnecessary and harmful strain on organs in the body, least of all your liver. By abusing alcohol, you put yourself at risk of contracting alcoholic hepatitis. It takes many years for alcoholic hepatitis to arise, but when this deadly disease does arise, you risk significantly shortening your lifespan.

When you abuse alcohol over many years, your liver becomes inflamed. Inflammation of the liver is the hallmark of alcoholic hepatitis. This deadly disease is inflicted over a 10-20-year period. This is why alcoholic hepatitis is often referred to as a chronic disorder.

The vast majority of people living with alcoholic hepatitis are between the ages of 40 and 60 years old. This is because it takes many years for alcoholic hepatitis to fully develop. If you contract alcoholic hepatitis, much of the damage caused by this disease is irreversible. However, by ceasing to drink alcohol, you may be able to mitigate associated symptoms.

Roughly fifty per cent of people with alcoholic hepatitis will die within a few months of being diagnosed with this illness. Since there is no cure for alcoholic hepatitis short of receiving a liver transplant, prevention is key. Educating you of the risks before alcoholic hepatitis arises is the most effective way of dealing with this matter.

How does alcoholic hepatitis develop?

When the liver is exposed to alcohol, excess fat begins to build up in the liver's cells. The liver is only able to process around one unit of alcohol per hour. When fat builds up in the liver due to alcohol exposure, the liver is then unable to filter out toxins. The residue of these toxins hardens the tissue in the liver, eventually causing scarring of the liver.

These toxins also spill into the bloodstream. Thus, these toxins are now capable of reaching other organs in the body.

The symptoms of alcoholic hepatitis

Blood testing is not able to diagnose alcoholic hepatitis. Instead, the symptoms must be observed for a diagnosis to be made.

Below, we list some of the more common symptoms associated with alcoholic hepatitis:

  1. Tenderness and swelling in the abdominal region: If you experience a sore abdomen, then you could be suffering from a swollen liver. This is medically known as a hepatomegaly. Sometimes you will also experience enlargement of the abdomen region. This is known as the 'spare tire' effect when your abdomen region enlarges out of proportion to the rest of your body
  2. Appetite loss: this symptom commonly goes hand-in-hand with alcohol abuse. When you abuse alcohol and fail to eat enough food, you risk developing malnourishment. This means you are not eating enough vitamins and minerals to meet your basic needs
  3. Low-grade fever: it's likely you will feel slightly feverish. This could be a sign you are suffering from an infection. Seek out a blood test to screen yourself for an infection linked to alcoholic hepatitis
  4. Whitening of the eyes and yellowing of the skin: Yellowing of the skin, also known as jaundice, is perhaps the most common symptoms associated with alcoholic hepatitis. This effect is caused by a waste product known as bilirubin

Call Rehab 4 Alcoholism for fast help

Rehab 4 Alcoholism offers safe and secure alcohol detoxification treatment for people suffering from alcoholism throughout the United Kingdom. Centres are typically residential in nature and offer a diverse range of treatment plans depending on the severity of addiction and personal wishes of patients.

Please call Rehab 4 Alcoholism today by dialling 0800 111 4108.


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