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Encyclopedia > Liver failure

Liver failure is the final stage of liver disease. By definition, liver failure occurs when the liver is so diseased, and functioning so poorly, that encephalopathy is evident. Any progressive liver disease can result in liver failure; examples include: acetaminophen toxicity, cirrhosis, viral hepatitis, and metastatic cancer of the liver. Other signs of liver disease such as jaundice, ascites, fetor hepaticus, and failure of coagulation indicate that the liver is having trouble performing its normal physiological duties, but it is not termed liver failure until the mental status changes appear. The liver is an organ in vertebrates including humans. ... Encephalopathy is a container term for various conditions affecting the brain. ... Acetaminophen (USAN) or paracetamol (INN), is a popular analgesic and antipyretic drug that is used for the relief of fever, headaches, and other minor aches and pains. ... Cirrhosis is a chronic disease of the liver in which liver tissue is replaced by connective tissue, resulting in the loss of liver function. ... In medicine (gastroenterology), hepatitis is any disease featuring inflammation of the liver. ... When normal cells are damaged or old they undergo apoptosis; cancer cells, however, avoid apoptosis. ... Jaundice, technically known as icterus, is yellowing of the skin, sclera (eyes) and mucous membranes caused by increased levels of bilirubin in the system. ... Fetor hepaticus, also known as breath of the dead, is a condition of gastrointestinal mercaptan formation frequently associated with liver failure. ... Coagulation is the thickening or congealing of any liquid into solid clots. ...


Treatment involves correcting any underlying cause, if this is possible, else medications such as lactulose are given to relieve the symptoms. Lactulose is a synthetic sugar used in the treatment of liver disease. ...


External link

  • Concerns about liver failure (http://www.mywhatever.com/cifwriter/library/mortals/mort2514.html) from Handbook for Mortals

  Results from FactBites:
 
Liver failure - definition of Liver failure in Encyclopedia (146 words)
Liver failure is the final stage of liver disease.
By definition, liver failure occurs when the liver is so diseased, and functioning so poorly, that encephalopathy is evident.
Other signs of liver disease such as jaundice, ascites, and failure of coagulation indicate that the liver is having trouble performing its normal physiological duties, but it is not termed liver failure until the mental status changes appear.
Liver Disease (8255 words)
The liver removes old or damaged red blood cells from the circulation, and is involved with the storage of iron and the breakdown of hemoglobin.
In a normal liver the rate at which the fat from the bloodstream enters the liver and the rate at which the liver utilizes this fat is roughly equal.
The liver might be hard to evaluate because a lack of abdominal fat, due to emaciation or a young animal.
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