Possible Fatty Liver complications

If untreated, fatty liver disease could lead to complicated liver diseases.

It usually takes years or even decades until a typical fatty liver patient develops one of these advanced liver diseases.

Possible Fatty Liver Complications if untreated

  • NASH – a more severe form of fatty liver, which causes inflammation and liver cell damage, in addition of fat in your liver.
  • Hepatitis – a viral virus that damages the liver.
  • Cirrhosis – a severe liver condition, that kills liver cells and leads to a liver failure.

This is why it is so important to treat a fatty liver as early as diagnosed, and avoid these kind of complications. A non-alcoholic fatty liver disease treatment usually does not involve typical drugs as we are used for other conditions, but only involves losing weight, a change on your eating habits, getting physically active.

However, an alcoholic fatty liver disease treatment usually only includes a strict limit to the consumed amount of alcoholic drinks.

Fatty Liver Complications

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Green Tea extract may prevent Fatty Liver

A new research done in the University of Connecticut, investigated the benefits of green tea and its influence on fatty liver disease (steatosis). The researchers found that green tea might stop fat build-up around the liver.

This green tea study has been done on mice, and if the results could be translated to humans, the conclusion would be that green tea might become a very beneficial to prevent a fatty liver.

The research took six straight weeks, and included 3 groups of mice. The first group didn’t receive any green tea extract; the second group fed with one percent of green tea extract, and the third one with two percent.

The study clearly shows the benefits of Green Tea

At the end of the research the two groups of mice who have been fed with green tea extract diet, had a decrease of 23-25 percent of their body weight. However, the mice who didn’t receive the supplement had only 11-20 percent decrease in their weight.

The research also included testing the level of Alanine Aminotransferase (ALT) and Aspartate Aminotransferase (AST) enzymes in their bloodstream. The results have shown a decrease of the enzyme levels by 30-41 percent in the mice who fed with green tea extract, against 22-33 percent in the mice who didn’t feed with it.

Green tea is also known for its contribution for weight loss, which is crucial to prevent and cure a fatty liver disease.

Can Taurine treat Fatty Liver?

A recent research done by scientists from the University of London’s School of Pharmacy, claim that Taurine could undo the liver damage done by alcoholism.

What is Taurine?

Taurine is a core ingredient in the bile and helps digesting fats and absorb vitamins that are capable of  fat dissolvent. It is an essential acid that our body manufactures naturally.

It is usually sold as a dietary supplement in a form of capsules and can be purchased online or from your local pharmacy.

About the research

The researchers gave rats excessive amounts of alcohol, and for some of them a small amount of Taurine for one single month.

They found that it prevented fat build-up around the liver, and more unexpectedly, Taurine reversed the liver damaged caused by alcohol.

Additional research done by scientists in Ireland, found that Taurine has similar effect in children with fatty liver disease due to obesity (Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver or NAFLD).

It’s worth looking at if you’re looking for natural ways to help with fatty liver treatment.

In addition, if you’re serious about natural treatment for fatty liver, I highly recommend the fatty liver diet guide written by Dorothy Spencer BSN, RN It helped a lot of my patients.

Fatty Liver on Ultrasound & Fatty Liver Images

One of the common ways to diagnose liver disorders and diseases (including fatty liver) is an abdominal ultrasound test.

Using fatty liver ultrasound, it is possible to analyze and confirm the existence or non-existence of fatty liver.

The abdominal ultrasound is a painless test that uses sound waves to produce images of your liver, and the entire process usually takes less than 15 minutes, and it is required to fast for at least 6.

For accurate results, you should avoid eating fresh fruits, fried food, milk, eggs, and bread the day before the liver ultrasound test.

How an Abdominal Ultrasound room typically looks like

fatty liver on ultrasound

You will be asked to lie on your back for this test. A special Ultrasound Gel will be rubbed on your abdomen to help send the sound waves better and produce correct liver ultrasound images. Your health-care provider will then move the ultrasound sensor around different area of your abdominal, including your liver. He may ask you to hold your breath at times and/or change positions.

The liver ultrasound pictures helps your doctor to confirm or rule out fatty liver disease, how your liver functions, and whether it’s enlarged or not. In other words, it’s a very useful tool for diagnosing a fatty liver.

Healthy Liver Ultrasound picture

Fatty Liver Images

In the liver ultrasound picture sample above, it shows a typical healthy liver, at normal size, with no signs of a liver disorder. A liver specialist would come to the conclusion that the liver is perfectly normal.

Now lets take a look of a Fatty Liver on Ultrasound

Fatty Liver Images

You can actually see fatty liver images in the ultrasound above (the black area is fat that covers the liver). Fatty Liver is a very common reason for performing an abdominal ultrasound. In fact, it’s the most common liver disease in the world so performing a fatty liver ultrasound is one of the things many people go through to diagnose the disease.

I also recommend you to read full details on liver ultrasound preparation.

Fatty Liver Causes

There are two types of fatty liver – one that develops due to excessive consumption of alcohol, and the other that develops in non-drinkers, after an excessive amounts of fat buildup around the liver.

Alcoholic Fatty Liver

Chronic alcoholism can lead to a slow and progressive liver failure. This is known as one of the two common fatty liver causes, because the first phase of an alcoholic liver diseases will probably be an Alcoholic liver disease (also called “alcoholic steatosis”).

The damage is usually reversible if the patient becomes determined and abstinent. But with continued drinking, the result could be unfortunate. When this happens, liver cells gradually die and will be replaced by scar tissue. Excessive amounts of scar tissue can lead to a liver failure and/or Cirrhosis.

Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD)

The second fatty liver type and by large a more common one, is a non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Until couple of year ago, it was believed that a non-alcoholics fatty liver was just a symptom of being overweight, or a diabetic. But studies from years ago have concluded that a non-alcoholic fatty liver disease is a completely different disease, which can lead to serious consequences if untreated. The most common causes of the disease are:

  • Bad Food habits – eating high-fat concentrated, fried food with high cholesterol; “fast food”; sugar rich snacks.
  • Lack or very low physical activity.
  • Being overweight or obese.

Non-alcholic Fatty Liver Disease and Cirrhosis Progression

NAFLD includes two different levels

  • Simple Fatty Liver (steatosis)
    This is caused due to the deposition of fats in the liver. It usually does not lead to liver inflammation or scar tissue, and the risk of progressive liver damage is relatively low. There are no identified symptoms for simple fatty liver.
  • NASH (Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis)
    In NASH, besides the excess of fat, there are some signs of inflammation and the liver cells are dying (necrosis).

NASH considered to be more severe than other forms of Non-Alcoholic fatty liver. This is because the simple fact that liver cells are dying. Patients who suffer from NASH are one stage closer to liver cirrhosis. In the United Status, NASH is now considered to be the 3rd most common cause of liver disease in adults (followed by hepatitis C and alcohol). This is most popular cause of liver disease among adolescents.