Cirrhosis Cirrhosis is a condition in which the
liver slowly deteriorates and
malfunctions due to chronic injury. Scar
tissue replaces healthy liver tissue,
partially blocking the flow of blood
through the liver.
Scarring also impairs
the liver’s ability to • control infections
• remove bacteria and toxins from the
• process nutrients, hormones, and drugs
• make proteins that regulate blood
• produce bile to help absorb
A healthy liver is able to regenerate
most of its own cells when they become
damaged. With end-stage cirrhosis, the
liver can no longer effectively replace
damaged cells. A healthy liver is
necessary for survival.
Cirrhosis is not caused by trauma to the
liver or other acute, or short-term,
causes of damage. Usually years of
chronic injury are required to cause
cirrhosis. Alcohol-related liver
disease, chronic hepatitis B, C or D,
non-alcoholic fatty liver disease,
autoimmune hepatitis, diseases that
damage or destroy bile ducts, inherited
diseases or drugs, toxins and infections
may lead to cirrhosis of liver.
As the disease progresses, a person may
experience symptoms like weakness,
fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea,
vomiting, weight loss, abdominal pain
and bloating when fluid accumulates in
the abdomen, itching and spiderlike
blood vessels on the skin.
Nutritional Management in Liver
The goals of treatment are to slow the
progression of scar tissue in the liver
and prevent or treat the complications
of the disease.
• Because malnutrition is common in
people with cirrhosis, a healthy diet is
important in all stages of the disease.
Health care providers recommend a meal
plan that is well balanced.
• If ascites develops, a
sodium-restricted diet is recommended.
• To improve nutrition, the doctor may
add a liquid supplement taken by mouth
or through a naso-gastric tube.
• People with cirrhosis are encouraged
not to consume any alcohol or illicit
substances, as both will cause more
• Because many vitamins and
over-the-counter—can affect liver
function, a doctor should be consulted
before taking them.
• Diets high in fat for people with
cirrhosis may cause potential digestion
problems. So moderate amounts of fat
should be taken that too in form of
unsaturated fats MUFA & PUFA.
• Amount of protein to be given to the
patient depends on the liver’s ability
to metabolize. If patient can tolerate
good amount of high quality protein can
be given as it helps in rehabilitation
of liver cells otherwise amount has to
be kept low according to the doctor’s
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