Damages of liver

Normal and Therapeutic Nutrition 3(2+1)
Lesson 24:Liver diseases-Jaundice-causes, symptoms, dietary management

Damages of liver

  1. Fatty globulation: It is the deposition of droplets of fat in the cells. This process is completely reversible, but if the damage is severe or long lasting it may be followed by necrosis or fibrosis.
  2. Necrosis or death of the cells may be slight and only involve part of the lobule, e.g. ishchaemia due to heart failure causes central necrosis around the hepatic vein, or it may be massive and cause widespread destruction of the organs.
  3. Cirrhosis: Fibrosis, the end result of any liver damage which leads to necrosis and also occurs in the absence of obvious necrosis gives rise to the condition cirrhosis.
  4. Jaundice

Fatty Liver

Other names: hepatic steatosis or steatohepatitis
Fatty liver is the condition of fat accumulation in liver cells (hepatocytes), causing,

  • Cell enlargement (fatty liver or steatosis)
  • Damage to the cell (steatohepatitis).

The damage is often minor although a small proportion of patients with steatohepatitis develop liver fibrosis and cirrhosis.

  1. Development: The fat present in the healthy cells is not visible as the water insoluble triglycerides linked to phospholipids and other substances form amphipathic molecule that gets dispersed as micelles in the cell water.
  2. The complex physicochemical environment that permits micelle formation is readily disturbed by the alteration of nutrition of cell by formation of droplets of triglycerides

  3. Cause of Fatty Liver
    • Low level of protein (Choline and methionine)
    • Obesity
    • High dietary intake of saturated fats
    • Excessive alcohol consumption
    • Diabetes mellitus.
    • Less common causes include pregnancy, some medications (eg. corticosteroids).
  4. Symptoms
    • Minor symptoms like overweight,
    • High consumption of fatty food and alcohol
    • Discomfort in the upper abdomen on the right side or there may be no symptoms.
    • Often the only abnormality is raised liver enzymes.
  5. Diagnosis and Diet
    • If there are minimal symptoms, there is no evidence or liver dysfunction or failure, and the liver enzymes are only mildly raised, it may be adequate to advise dietary and other changes and observe the patient.
    • Diet of normal energy, high quality protein, low fat as per severity.
Last modified: Tuesday, 25 October 2011, 5:02 AM