Autoimmune hepatitis is a chronic inflammatory process in the liver of unknown nature, which is characterized by severe inflammation and fibrosis, up to the development of cirrhosis of the liver, in some cases - the development of acute hepatic cell insufficiency. Specifically, the presence of autoantibodies, an increase in the level of gamma globulins and a good response to immunosuppressive therapy.
How does autoimmune hepatitis manifest itself?
You should consult a gastroenterologist if you have:
- rapid fatigue, unmotivated weakness
- reduced physical activity
- unexplained by other causes of joint pain without deformity
- persistent rashes on the skin (acne, acne)
- unexplained by other reasons, subfebrile temperature (up to 38 ° C)
- during the preventive examination, changes in the "liver samples"were detected in the blood test.
The diagnosis of autoimmune hepatitis can be made only after the exclusion of other liver diseases:
viral hepatitis, including acute (A, B ,C, D, E)
other autoimmune liver diseases: PBC, PSC
Wilson-Konovalov disease, hemochromatosis, α1-antitrypsin deficiency
toxic forms of hepatitis (alcoholic and medicinal).
How do I know if I have autoimmune hepatitis?
- in the biochemical analysis of blood, an increase in bilirubin, ALT, AST is detected
- autoantibodies are detected: antinuclear antibodies (ANA), anti-smooth muscle antibodies (ASMA), hepatic-renal antibodies (LKM), and others.
- during the examination, including ultrasound of the abdominal cavity, an increase in the liver and spleen is detected.
Important! The final diagnosis in some cases will help to establish only a puncture biopsy of the liver.
How to live with it?
Follow a healthy lifestyle:
Complete abstinence from alcohol
Compliance with the daily routine-alternation of work and rest
Limit your diet:
- Salt and salt-rich foods
- Foods high in calories and saturated fat (fatty meats, margarine, sweets)
What can help?
Timely medical therapy, which can only be prescribed by a specialist hepatologist!
Drugs with immunosuppressive effects (glucocorticoid hormones, cytostatics):
- Block the effect of autoantibodies on liver cells
- Reduce active inflammation in the liver and prevent further death of liver cells
Constant monitoring by a hepatologist, regular monitoring of the parameters of the biochemical blood test.
Do not delay-seek qualified medical help!
Remember, that a correct and timely diagnosis guarantees the effectiveness of treatment!
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