Non-alcoholic Steatohepatitis (NASH) in Texas
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What is non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH)?
There are a couple of different categories of disease for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, commonly called NAFLD. The first disease involves a buildup of fat in the liver that doesn't cause any outward symptoms or accompanying inflammation. Usually, this type of disease is diagnosed when other tests are performed. This type of NAFLD is also considered non-cancerous, but it does have the probability to progress to non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH).
The second is more serious and is known as NASH. NASH is also characterized by the buildup of fat in your liver that is accompanied by inflammation. NASH is often found in individuals who are larger, are diabetic, and/or have high blood sugar, and have high cholesterol. Unless properly treated, NASH can impact liver function and create more health concerns.
For more information about the NASH treatment in Texas, request a consultation at your nearest Texas Digestive Disease Consultants location today.
What are the symptoms of NASH?
A number of people who have NASH live without having symptoms. NASH may, sometimes, result in scarring of the liver, known as cirrhosis. If NASH symptoms occur, they might include:
- Unintentional loss of weight
- Aching in the upper right part of the abdomen
- Everlasting fatigue
If you've been diagnosed with NASH and develop difficulty breathing, swelling in your legs, or are unusually tired, contact your TDDC provider right away. The experts at Texas Digestive Disease Consultants can help you find answers.
Who is at risk for NASH?
The precise cause of NASH is not known. Even though it can affect younger individuals, this condition usually impacts adults. Additional risk factors for NASH include:
- High blood sugar
- High blood pressure
- Type 2 (adult-onset) diabetes
- Post-menopausal phase of life
- Hispanic or Asian descent (although NASH can be seen in anyone)
- Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)
- High cholesterol
Can NASH be treated?
Left untreated, non-alcoholic steatohepatitis might cause other health problems, including cirrhosis, liver cancer, and in the end, liver failure. When NASH is diagnosed, adjusting your weight, blood sugar levels, and cholesterol can help not just your liver, but, also, your whole body.
After you've been diagnosed with non-alcoholic steatohepatitis, you will need to regularly see your gastroenterologist/hepatologist in order to monitor your liver. Treatments for NASH in Texas could involve a combo of eating healthy, limiting your sugar and sodium intake, and getting regular exercise. We will also need to address any additional conditions that may increase the risk of NASH.
Non-alcoholic Steatohepatitis FAQs
What are the primary differences between NAFLD and NASH?
Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease are types of fatty liver disease. Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease involves the buildup of fat within the liver, but with this variation, damage has not occurred. NASH is a form of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease that also involves fat accumulation in the liver, yet, in this case inflammation, damage, and even scarring are involved.
How do you recognize the indications of NASH if it does not produce symptoms?
Even though there may be no noticeable symptoms of non-alcoholic steatohepatitis, you may experience extreme exhaustion or pain in the upper right abdominal area (where the liver is located). Often, the first indicator of liver disease, such as non-alcoholic steatohepatitis, is when scarring of the liver (cirrhosis) occurs. Cirrhosis may cause certain symptoms you can detect, including:
- Swelling in the abdominal area
- Yellowing of the skin and eyes
If left untreated, what health complications can result with NASH?
If left untreated, non-alcoholic steatohepatitis might result in fibrosis and cirrhosis of the liver. Liver fibrosis results when the liver becomes inflamed and scarred. The scar tissue can replace healthy tissue (liver cirrhosis), which can cause liver function to slow or stop completely. Without treatment, these conditions could end up causing liver failure and cancer.
Is it possible to reverse the damage caused by non-alcoholic steatohepatitis?
Those who are experiencing the early stages of non-alcoholic steatohepatitis and have not experienced extensive damage to the liver might be able to reverse the effects of the condition by adopting lifestyle changes, such as healthy eating, exercise, and weight loss. But if long-term or more significant damage has developed, the effects of the condition may not be reversible. Our Texas gastroenterology doctors can offer further information and details regarding this disease.
Improve your liver health
Receiving the medical attention you need to maintain your liver health and minimize the impact of NASH can help improve your quality of life. At Texas Digestive Disease Consultants, our providers are dedicated to placing your health first, and we take a patient-centric approach to provide individualized service. If you believe you might have this condition or are seeking a provider who offers treatment for NASH in Texas, please request a consultation at a location near you.
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