Acute liver failure
Acute liver failure
Acute liver failure occurs when your liver rapidly loses its ability to function. More commonly, liver failure develops slowly over the course of years. But in acute liver failure, liver failure develops in a matter of days.
Acute liver failure can cause many complications, including excessive bleeding and increasing pressure in the brain. Another term for acute liver failure is fulminant hepatic failure.
Acute liver failure is a medical emergency that requires hospitalization. Some causes of acute liver failure can be reversed with treatment. But in other situations, a liver transplant may be the only cure for acute liver failure.
The liver is your largest internal organ. About the size of a football, it's located mainly in the upper right portion of your abdomen, beneath the diaphragm and above your stomach, but a small ...
Signs and symptoms of acute liver failure may include:
When to see a doctor
Acute liver failure occurs when liver cells are damaged significantly and no longer able to function. Acute liver failure has many potential causes, including:
Many cases of acute liver failure have no apparent cause.
Acute liver failure often causes complications, including:
Preparing for your appointment
If your doctor suspects you may be experiencing acute liver failure, you'll likely be admitted to a hospital for treatment. Most people with acute liver failure are treated in an intensive care unit.
Questions to expect from your doctor
Questions to ask your doctor
Tests and diagnosis
Tests and procedures used to diagnose acute liver failure include:
Treatments and drugs
People with acute liver failure are treated in the intensive care unit of a hospital. When it's possible, your doctor will work to treat your acute liver failure. But in many cases, the treatment involves controlling complications and giving your liver time to heal.
Treatments for acute liver failure
Treatments for complications
Reduce your risk of acute liver failure by taking care of your liver. Try to:
Last Updated: 2011-07-02
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