Cirrhosis is a severe condition in which the liver is damaged and scarred over time, leading to the formation of fibrous tissue. This fibrous tissue disrupts the normal structure and function of the liver, making it unable to perform its many vital functions, such as filtering toxins from the blood, producing bile, and storing energy.
Cirrhosis is typically caused by chronic liver diseases, such as chronic hepatitis B or C, alcoholic liver disease, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, or liver disease due to other underlying conditions. The damage to the liver is progressive and, in advanced cases, can lead to liver failure, which can be life-threatening.
Symptoms of cirrhosis can include fatigue, weakness, weight loss, loss of appetite, abdominal swelling, itching, jaundice, and the development of blood-clotting disorders. Treatment options for cirrhosis include addressing the underlying cause, lifestyle changes, and medications to manage symptoms. If the cirrhosis is severe enough, a liver transplant would be necessary.