Health and MedicineDiseasesGood news: Possible treatment for cirrhosis found

Good news: Possible treatment for cirrhosis found

Spanish scientists discover a possible effective medical treatment for liver cirrhosis, avoiding the formation of collateral blood vessels. We find out more about this important discovery.

There are many different diseases that can affect the liver, a very important organ that, among other vital functions, participates in a wide variety of both metabolic and hormonal functions. For example, it is responsible for the metabolism of fats and carbohydrates, stores fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, K and E) and glycogen, destroys toxins from those wastes produced naturally by our body (such as is the case of ammonia), and destroys aged red and white blood cells.

One of the disorders that most tend to affect you is liver cirrhosis. It is a chronic liver injury characterized by the accumulation of scars (fibrous nodules) in the tissue, which negatively interfere with both its structure and its normal functioning. This accumulation of scars complicates the correct blood circulation through the liver, which generates portal hypertension of the portal vein, so that to release pressure in the vein, collateral blood vessels are generated outside the organ.

These blood vessels tend to form varies both in the stomach and in the esophagus, while being so fragile they are much more likely to break causing very intense bleeding that is difficult to stop.

What are the main causes of liver cirrhosis? Basically alcoholism, hepatitis C and obesity. In the latter case, fatty liver has a lot to do with it, a disease that increases alarmingly every year and that consists of the excessive accumulation of fat in this organ as a result of being overweight.

The problem of the generation of collateral blood vessels is twofold, since on the one hand less blood would reach the liver which causes more liver damage, and on the other the blood vessels would be of poor quality. In an attempt to repair the injuries, the liver cells work actively, but in the end this regeneration, which at other times is very beneficial and positive, turns into a very negative cycle.

As we have learned today, researchers at the Barcelona Biomedical Research Institute  have just discovered a possible medical treatment for cirrhosis, discovering that the CPEB4 protein would be the molecule to disable in order to prevent new abnormal blood vessels from being generated when there is cirrhosis.

In the words of the researchers, a medical treatment or therapy aimed at reversing the collateral blood vessels would be efficient.

What is the current medical treatment for liver cirrhosis?

So far we are facing an irreversible disease. Therefore, the treatment and the advice or measures to follow pursue the objective of stopping the liver damage as far as possible.

Thus, for example, it is essential to limit the use of drugs and give up alcohol, and it is vitally important to avoid other diseases that cause liver damage, such as viral hepatitis A and B, as well as others such as pneumococcal pneumonia. Or the flu itself.

The administration of drugs helps reduce venous pressure in patients with esophageal varies, in order to prevent them from rupturing and causing intense bleeding. While hepatic encephalopathy is treated with antibiotics and laxatives in order to lower the ammonia levels in the blood.

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