Steatohepatitis, fatty liver hepatitis, fatty liver cells
The excessive storage of fats in the tissue of the liver (Parenchyma) is called Fatty liver cells (if more than 5% are affected) or as Fatty liver (if more than 50% is affected) designated. If there is an inflammatory reaction in the liver accompanying or in the course of the disease, one speaks of one Fatty liver hepatitis (Steatohepatitis).
However, fatty liver is not an independent disease, but rather a symptomthat fatty liver can be cured if the underlying disease is adequately treated.
Depending on the underlying disease causing the disease, the group of steatohepatitis becomes one alcoholic (ASH= aalcoholic S.teatoHepatitis) and one non-alcoholic (NASH= notaalcoholic S.teatoHepatitis), which, however, can only be differentiated with a light microscope.
There are numerous causes for it to develop Fatty liver. From a biochemical point of view, an oversupply of fats or a reduced ability of the liver to process these fats leads to an excessive storage of fats.
The most common reason for an excess of fats in the liver is chronic, excessive consumption of alcohol. Of the alcohol will be in stomach - Intestines - The tract is absorbed (taken up) and transported to the liver via the portal vein.
There, a predominantly constant part of the alcohol is detoxified by the liver cells and converted into activated acetic acid (acetyl-CoA). Many individual acetic acids are combined into fatty acids in a healthy liver and released into the bloodstream with the help of special lipoproteins.
The alcohol abuse leads to the fact that the liver cells can no longer carry out the removal of fatty acids functionally. This leads to the result that the fat remains in the cell. The more fat the individual cell stores and the more cells are affected, the more the liver swells.
Another common reason for developing one Fatty liver is the disease Diabetes mellitus (most of time Type II diabetes; Diabetes). The decisive factor is the decreased effectiveness of the hormone Insulins on the organism. This means that there is no signal that enough energy is available. The liver therefore constantly tries to provide energy and produces fatty acids (Fatty acid synthesis) and sugar (Gluconeogenesis). In this case, too, the liver cells fail to release all the substances produced into the blood, which leads to swelling of the cell.
Other factors in the development of fatty liver include:
- Malnutrition (too little protein, too much fat)
- genetic stress (hyperlipoproteinemia),
- Drug side effects (Antibiotics from the group of Tetracyclines, Cortisone) and other.
Often the patient does not even notice the disease, because the fatty liver does not directly lead to liver pain or discomfort. What strikes him the most is a rather diffuse symptom in the right upper abdomen with a feeling of pressure or fullness as an expression of the increase in size of the liver.
Only when there is an inflammatory reaction do other symptoms typical of liver diseases appear, such as jaundice (Jaundice), Pain, nausea. However, these are usually only mildly pronounced.
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Diagnostics of fatty liver
For the doctor, they often already present themselves in the medical history (anamnese) Suspicions such as alcohol abuse, malnutrition, diabetes (Diabetes) or obesity (pathological excess weight). During the clinical examination, a palpably enlarged liver (Hepatomegaly, swollen liver), which shows a typical picture on ultrasound.
The blood values are mostly normal, there is only an increase in gGT (liver enzyme, an increase indicates liver damage).
If there are no further symptoms, this corroborates the suspected diagnosis of fatty liver, which, however, would only be proven by a liver biopsy (tissue sample of the liver).
Fatty liver hepatitis causes a moderate increase in transaminases (Liver enzymes) GPT and GOT. For more information on these values, as well as other liver values, please also read our liver values page.
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Patient with Fatty liver hepatitis / fatty liver have a significantly increased risk of developing one Cirrhosis of the liver or one Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). This is why the therapy of fatty liver is important, especially because it is completely curable.
The general rule is that one liver damaging drugs and avoid food ingredients whenever possible to stop the progression of fatty liver.
The causal therapy of fatty liver depends on the cause of the development of fatty liver, for example in the strict avoidance of alcohol or harmful drugs, in the adequate treatment of the diabetes or the Normalization of weight and nutrition.
With these relatively simple and gentle therapy options, a complete regression of the fatty liver is possible!
Alternative medicine can cause fatty liver disease homeopathy get supported. Learn more about this in Homeopathy for liver disease.