What to do for fatty liver? Is it as serious as cirrhosis or is it something that you can just live with? Many people have this condition but are not aware that they have it. There are many medications and treatments available, but do they work? Read on to find out more about fatty liver and the options available to help treat it.
What is a fatty liver and what causes it? Basically the liver is the one organ that stores fat and it uses it when necessary. However, the liver is also responsible for filtering fats before they are turned into usable substances by the rest of the body. When the liver becomes overloaded the filtering process slows down, which results in more fat being stored in the liver.
There are two main types of treatment used for fatty liver. The first type of treatment is non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). These are usually considered to be the “first line of defense” when dealing with liver disease. They work by reducing inflammation, which allows the liver to begin functioning again.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are taken orally and do not cause significant side effects. However, they do have their own set of problems. NSAIDs work by limiting the absorption of other nutrients by the liver which leads to an imbalance in nutrient delivery. This imbalance causes the liver to have trouble processing fat. This leads to more fat building up in the liver and thus more pain and discomfort.
The second treatment option is to take acetaminophen or ibuprofen. These drugs can effectively relieve the pain from liver damage, but the acetaminophen is the more effective. You need to be very careful when taking these drugs and they should never be taken in combination with another drug. If you do take them together, it can actually lead to a condition called acetaminophen toxicity, which leads to severe liver damage. If this occurs you will experience further pain and inflammation as well as further damage to your liver.
One of the more experimental treatments for fatty liver disease is surgery. There have been some very interesting breakthroughs in the area of liver surgery. For instance, in the late 1990s, doctors were able to remove a portion of the liver to treat Crohn’s disease. After removing that portion, the patient was able to control the pain and eventually the severity of his illness. Though this is still considered experimental, there are other cases where surgeons have performed this procedure successfully.
Another option available to you if you are wondering what to do for fatty liver disease is called nutritional therapy. This approach attempts to help the liver to heal itself by adding certain fatty acids to the body. This would include flaxseed oil, olive oil, and various vitamins and minerals. Although this seems like an easier approach, it is not without its own set of problems. Most notably, most of the nutrients are not available in drug form and must be obtained via dietary supplements.
Hopefully these types of alternative therapies for fatty liver disease will work better for you than conventional medicine. However, if your doctor is not willing to consider any of these options, it may be time to talk to your health insurance provider about funding a liver transplant. It is possible to cure your liver disease, and there is no reason why you should not fight for that victory.
If you would prefer not to undergo any sort of surgery to cure your fatty liver, there are prescription medications that can help. One such drug is Ginkgo biloba, which is often used to treat brain tumors. Another is Atacand or Aromatica, which helps calm the liver down. Another prescription drug called Reglan is sometimes used as a cure for fatty liver, although it is not available in most pharmacies. There is a newer drug on the market that is being evaluated with hopes of becoming more widely accepted – Aldactone.
There are many herbal remedies out there as well. An example is dandelion, which can be applied to the skin in gels, creams or ointments. Milk thistle is also effective in reducing a fatty liver disease. Other herbs with potential medicinal uses include coleus forskohili and gentian root. You should discuss all of your options with your doctor, because what to do for fatty liver disease is determined by what will work best for your particular condition.
You should also stay active and eat a healthy diet. Avoid fatty liver, and if you have it, try to take steps to reverse the damage that has already been done. Make sure that you get plenty of exercise and eat the right foods, such as fruits and vegetables. This will help your liver to recover, at least to a point. But do not rely solely on natural remedies and herbal remedies alone to help reverse the damage to your liver that has already been done.