- Take the Liver Disease Quiz
- A Visual Guide to Hepatitis Slideshow
- Take the Alcohol Quiz
- Patient Comments: Liver - Type of Disease and Treatments
- Patient Comments: Liver - Medications
- Patient Comments: Liver - Hepatitis
- Find a local Doctor in your town
- Facts about the liver
- What is the function of the liver?
- What are symptoms of liver diseases?
- What does the liver look like, and where is it located in the body?
- Liver disease causes (fatty liver, cirrhosis, hepatitis, and infections)
- Liver disease causes (medications, toxins, genetics, cancer, and others)
- What kind of doctor treats liver disease?
- How is an examination of the liver performed?
- What is a liver biopsy?
- Can diseases of the liver be prevented?
Liver disease causes (fatty liver, cirrhosis, hepatitis, and infections)
Many diseases may affect the liver directly or as a consequence of an illness or disease that begins in another organ.
Fatty liver disease
- Fatty liver disease, caused by accumulation of cholesterol and triglycerides within the liver is not associated with alcohol abuse. Fatty liver disease is also referred to as nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH).
- Cirrhosis of the liver describes a condition of scarring in the liver that is not reversible and may lead to liver failure.
- Alcohol abuse causes cirrhosis of the liver and is the most common cause of liver disease in North America.
Hepatitis is an infection of the liver that causes liver inflammation.
- Hepatitis A is often spread by poor sanitary habits including poor handwashing and may be transmitted by food handlers. It tends to be self-limited.
- Hepatitis B and hepatitis C are spread by contact with infected body fluids.
- Hepatitis D is spread in conjunction with hepatitis B and needs the B virus for it to survive in the body and cause liver damage.
- Hepatitis E is a food or water borne infection.
- There are vaccinations available to prevent hepatitis A and hepatitis B.
Infections may affect the liver, including:
- Epstein Barr virus that causes infectious mononucleosis
- Rocky Mountain spotted fever