Acute Liver Failure Treatment In India
- Acute Liver Failure (ALF) occurs when a there is a big insult to liver in a short span of time (usually within few days to 2 weeks), leading to rapid decline in the liver function.
- These individuals rapidly develop jaundice (yellowing of eyes/ dark yellow urine), coagulopathy (bleeding tendency) along with altered level of consciousness/ confusion and may go into coma.
- It should not be confused with other diseases/ intoxication or other types of liver failure due to Cirrhosis or Chronic Hepatitis.
The common causes are Hepatitis B, Hepatitis A, Hepatitis E, pregnancy, toxic doses of paracetamol (Crocin, Tylenol) and other drugs, and Wilson's disease (defect of copper metabolism). In a third of cases, the cause remains unknown.
- ALF is a life threatening emergency. The patient with a diagnosis of ALF should be managed at medical centers with advanced healthcare facilities and expertise is available. Such patients need to be admitted to ICU under care of doctors experienced in treating ALF and in liver transplantation.
- Most of these patients can be successfully treated in a dedicated Liver ICU Unit with supportive care and medicines under under care of doctors experienced in treating ALF and in liver transplantation.
- However, some of these patients may continue to deteriorate despite the best medical treatment and may need consideration for an urgent liver transplant. There are criteria which define which set of these patients qualify for an urgent liver transplant. Those patients who meet these criteria have less than 10% chance of surviving without a transplant. A liver transplant increases this chance to about 60%.
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