3aih jun 12 pdf

In order to reduce the dose of prednisolone needed the doctor looking after you will often choose to start you, at some point, on an additional drug treatment. In most people the drug used is azathioprine (in some individuals other agents will be chosen). Azathioprine and related drugs are very effective at reducing the doses of prednisolone required to keep autoimmune hepatitis under control (sometimes to the point where no prednisolone is eventually needed). They are not, however, effective at bringing the disease under control in then first place.
The treatment of autoimmune hepatitis is extremely effective at both controlling the symptoms of the disease and reducing the risk of chronic liver disease and cirrhosis developing in the future.
The mainstay of treatment for autoimmune hepatitis is drug therapy. You can help yourself, however, by keeping, in general terms, healthy and in particular, avoiding excess alcohol consumption. As a number of drugs and medications are normally cleared by the liver, and can cause liver damage in their own right, you should discuss any medication you intend to take with your doctor. LIVERNORTH is the regional liver patient support charity and has provided this leaflet free of charge. Can I pass it on to anyone else?No. This condition is not related in any way to Hepatitis B President: Professor OFW James MA BM BCh FRCP FAMSci Professor David Jones BM BCh MA PhD FRCP of the University of Newcastle upon Tyne Medical School for his professional contribution to this information leaflet.
As well as having many of the Freeman’s health professionals as Dr PT Donaldson BSc PhDDr H Mitchison MD FRCP members, we have access to extensive information on all liver diseases and treatments.
Information leaflets are available explaining each specific liver disease; some of these are available for free download from our This leaflet is for information only. Professional, medical or website (details below), others can be supplied free of charge on other advice should be obtained before acting on anything request (telephone, mail or email us).
contained in this leaflet. LIVERNORTH can accept no responsibility as a result of action taken or not taken because The reasons why the immune system should lose the Autoimmune hepatitis is a condition in which the liver is ability to discriminate between "self" and "foreign" and Where the condition is suspected (because of the progressively damaged by the bodies own defence system cause autoimmune disease of the liver (and indeed any presence of suggestive symptoms) the first test to be (the immune system). Over time, what starts as mild tissue) remain unclear. Current thinking is that two carried will be the liver function tests (LFTs). This is a damage can become more extensive and result in factors probably play a role. These factors are an blood test which assesses for the presence of damage to permanent damage to the liver. Because this damage takes individuals genetic make-up (the characteristics of each of the cells of the liver. If abnormal it suggests that damage is place over a long period of time the body tries to repair it our immune systems are determined by our genes) and occurring, but does not identify what is causing the (the liver actually as an impressive capacity to repair and some form of trigger (probably an otherwise harmless damage. The next test to be carried out will be a blood heal itself). The presence, at the same time, of damage virus which manages to "irritate" the immune system.
test looking for the presence of specific antibodies in the and repair can result in the development of cirrhosis.
blood which are suggestive of the presence of What problems does autoimmune hepatitis cause? autoimmune hepatitis. If these blood tests suggest that Cirrhosis. Does that mean it is caused by drinking Patients with autoimmune hepatitis develop two types of autoimmune hepatitis is present it is extremely important to confirm the diagnosis (to allow effective treatment and NO! It is a popular misconception that the term cirrhosis to assess how severe the existing liver damage is). One refers to liver damage caused by drinking too much The first type of problem results from chronic damage to way of confirming the diagnosis is with a liver biopsy (a alcohol. This is not the case. The term cirrhosis refers to the liver resulting, eventually, in the development of procedure where, under local anaesthetic, a needle is the combination of liver scarring caused by chronic liver cirrhosis. Whilst loss of hepatocytes initially causes little used to remove a tiny piece of liver tissue which is then damage and the attempts made by the liver to regenerate problem (the liver normally has a huge amount of spare itself. Any cause of chronic liver damage (and there are capacity) eventually in-sufficient hepatocytes may remain probably well over 100) can result in cirrhosis.
to perform the normal functions of the liver. This can Once the disease has been diagnosed and, where result in, amongst other things, the development of appropriate, treatment started, the response to What does cause autoimmune hepatitis then? jaundice and problems with blood clotting (the clotting treatment will be monitored primarily through the use of The short answer is that we do not know. We have, over factors which are needed to make the blood clot are further blood tests. Occasionally it will be necessary to millions of years, evolved an immune system that is mostly made by the liver). Where cirrhosis develops as a repeat the liver biopsy to monitor response to treatment.
extremely effective at protecting us against infection (we result of chronic liver damage additional problems caused all encounter thousands of potentially harmful bugs each by an increase in the pressure of blood within the blood year and yet most us, for most of the time, suffer no ill vessel connecting the bowel and the liver (the portal vein) Because the principal problem in AIH is an over-activity effects at all). The immune system, which works to protect can develop (portal hypertension). Problems caused by and incorrect targeting of the immune response the main us day in day out without us even being aware of it, is so portal hypertension include development of blood approach to treatment is to reduce the immune response. effective because it is able to identify bacteria and viruses vessels in the gullet with increased risk of bleeding In the first instance the drug prednisolone will be used. as being "foreign" and to eliminate them, whilst not (oesophageal varices) and accumulation of fluid in the Initially the doses used will be relatively high. They will, causing damage to the bodies own tissues ("self"). In a however, be reduced quite quickly (the rate of reduction number of situations this ability to discriminate between depending on how well you respond). Patients are often "self" and "foreign" fails, however, and the immune system The second type of problem encountered by patients with concerned at having to take prednisolone because of the starts to attack the bodies own tissues ("self"). These autoimmune hepatitis is the symptom set associated with risk if side effects. The doctors treating you are very conditions where the immune system turns in on itself are the inflammatory process going on within the liver. These aware of the concerns that you are likely to have and will known collectively as the autoimmune diseases. symptoms include fatigue and lethargy, and muscle and do their utmost to keep the doses as low as possible, and Autoimmune disease can potentially occur in any tissue in joint pains. These symptoms are important both because to leave you on the drug for as short a period of time as the body. Some tissues are more frequently involved than they can impair quality of life (and respond well to possible. You do need to be aware, however, that if not others. These include the thyroid (hypothyroidism) and treatment) and because they can alert doctors to the treated properly autoimmune hepatitis can damage the the joints (rheumatoid arthritis). Where the immune presence of autoimmune hepatitis at a time when liver liver very quickly and, at present, prednisolone is the only system attacks the cells of the liver (the hepatocytes) the damage can be prevented or reversed by treatment.
drug able to bring that damage under control quickly.
condition is called autoimmune hepatitis.

Source: http://www.livernorth.org.uk/pdfs/leaf03AIH%20Jun%2012%20PDF.pdf


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