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Doctor insights on: Hepatic Encephalopathy

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Dr. Robert Rahimi
56 doctors shared insights

Hepatic Encephalopathy (Overview)

Disturbance of consciousness from confusion to coma as a result of liver failure usually due to high levels of serum ammonia.


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What is hepatic encephalopathy and how bad is it?

What is hepatic encephalopathy and how bad is it?

HEPATIC ENCEPHALPATH: Hepatic encephalopathy is another description of hepatic coma and it is very very serious condition and can be fatal.It is caused by liver failure due to chronic liver disease, commonest of that is alcoholic cirrhosis. ...Read more

Dr. Robert Rahimi
56 doctors shared insights

Hepatic Encephalopathy (Overview)

Disturbance of consciousness from confusion to coma as a result of liver failure usually due to high levels of serum ammonia.


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What are the symptoms of hepatic encephalopathy?

What are the symptoms of hepatic encephalopathy?

Encephalopathy: Symptoms of hepatic encephalopathy may be mild at first then become severe. Mild symptoms may include mood changes, mild confusion, forgetfulness, and changes in sleep, while more severe symptoms may include agitation, disorientation or severe confusion, abnormal movements, sleepiness, and slurred speech. Patients may progress to coma and death in the most severe cases. ...Read more

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Is there anyway to get my husband who is deteriorating from cirrhosis & showing signs of hepatic encephalopathy to go the er, he refuses to go.

911 will help you: Please call 911 if your husband is abusive, violent, confused, incoherent, hallucinating, etc. An ambulance will come, do an initial quick review and from your description, should transport him to the er for further assessment and triage. He may need admission to hospital -- possibly will need a medical-psychiatric unit that can handle both his encephalopathy and his other behavioral issues. ...Read more

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How long does a person have to live when diagnosed with severe liver failure and hepatic encephalopathy?

How long does a person have to live when diagnosed with severe liver failure and hepatic encephalopathy?

Depends: If they can tolerate and respond to supportive treatment, then can be months. Often those two diagnoses will qualify for hospice care, as not all respond, and most have other health issues complicating management. Untreated or no response to tx usually less than 1 month. ...Read more

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Can anything else mimic hepatic encephalopathy? liver tests came back with no cirrhosis? former drinker, quit a month ago

Can anything else mimic hepatic encephalopathy? liver tests came back with no cirrhosis? former drinker, quit a month ago

Mimics: Hepatic encepahlopathy can be mimicked by drug side effects, infections, very low or high blood sugar, thryoid disorders, changes in kidney function (very high BUN), and changes in sodium, calcium, and potassium, to consider a few causes. ...Read more

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What may be the cause for hepatic encephalopathy in women?

What may be the cause for hepatic encephalopathy in women?

Liver disease: Hepatic encephalopathy is always caused by severe liver malfunction. There are a large number of causes, including liver damage from viruses ( hepatitis) toxins, tylenol (acetaminophen) overdose, alcohol abuse, and even autoimmune diseases. There are other less common causes of liver injury as well. ...Read more

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What does hepatic encephalopathy grade2 mean and what are the consequences?

What does hepatic encephalopathy grade2 mean and what are the consequences?

Variable: Hepatic encephalopathy (he) grade 2 usually infers lethargy or apathy; minimal disorientation for time or place; subtle personality change; inappropriate behavior. However, many things can change that, making it worse or better. Medications, such as lactulose or rifaximin, are used to treat he, and dietary indiscretion as well as infection or worsening liver function will make he worse. ...Read more

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What is the treatment for hepatic encephalopathy?

Underlying cause: The treatment of hepatic encephalopathy is three fold:
1) treat underlying cause of liver injury if possible ( so stop liver toxic drugs, steroids for autoimmune liver disease)
2) in patients with chronic liver disease, treat problems that can worsen the situation and cause encephalopathy such as infections, etc.
3) drugs to lower the ammonia levels, ammonia being too high in this condition. ...Read more

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What is best anti convulsant drug for patient with hepatic encephalopathy?

No one best: There is no one best drug but a physician will try to select one by balancing adequate seizure control, ease of use, other medical problems, with minimal risk of causing additional liver problems. Keppra (levetiracetam) (levetriacetam) is a potential choice with low risk of liver injury but there is no one best choice. ...Read more

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What is hepatic encephalopathy?

Hepatic encephalopat: Hepatic encephalopathy is a condition of confusion or altered alertness due to inhibition of brain function. It is believed that this is related to insufficient metabolism of the liver and build up of chemicals that can be transmitted to the brain by the blood stream. In some cases, an elevated blood ammonia level correlates with this condition, but not always, and the role of ammonia is debated. ...Read more

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Has anyone survived hepatic encephalopathy?

Sure !: The encephalopathy can be treated by the treatment of liver failure and depeding on the cause and the state of the disorder can be reversed. ...Read more

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What are the symptoms of hepatic encephalopathy?

Encephalopathy: Symptoms of hepatic encephalopathy may be mild at first then become severe. Mild symptoms may include mood changes, mild confusion, forgetfulness, and changes in sleep, while more severe symptoms may include agitation, disorientation or severe confusion, abnormal movements, sleepiness, and slurred speech. Patients may progress to coma and death in the most severe cases. ...Read more

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What is hepatic encephalopathy and how bad is it?

HEPATIC ENCEPHALPATH: Hepatic encephalopathy is another description of hepatic coma and it is very very serious condition and can be fatal.It is caused by liver failure due to chronic liver disease, commonest of that is alcoholic cirrhosis. ...Read more

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What is the rationale for hepatic encephalopathy?

Liver failure: Liver failure in metabolism of toxic chemicals in particular ammonia and the effect of these substances in the brain cause disturbance of brain function (encephalopathy). ...Read more

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How long can a person live with hepatic encephalopathy?

How long can a person live with hepatic encephalopathy?

Hepatic enceph: Treatment of the cause of hepatic encephlopathy and symptomatic managemenr of the encephalopathy will help. Please call your hepatologist for specific qquestions. ...Read more

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What may be the cause for hepatic encephalopathy in women?

Liver disease: Hepatic encephalopathy is always caused by severe liver malfunction. There are a large number of causes, including liver damage from viruses ( hepatitis) toxins, tylenol (acetaminophen) overdose, alcohol abuse, and even autoimmune diseases. There are other less common causes of liver injury as well. ...Read more

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What is the definition or description of: hepatic encephalopathy?

Altered mental statu: Disturbance of consciousness from confusion to coma as a result of liver failure usually due to high levels of serum ammonia. ...Read more

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I think my husband may have hepatic encephalopathy. What can they do?

Treat liver: Treatment involves treating the underlying liver disease, treat other problems that can make the problem worse such as infection, and medications to lower ammonia levels, ammonia being one the the toxins the damaged liver does not handle well. ...Read more

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What does hepatic encephalopathy grade2 mean and what are the consequences?

Variable: Hepatic encephalopathy (he) grade 2 usually infers lethargy or apathy; minimal disorientation for time or place; subtle personality change; inappropriate behavior. However, many things can change that, making it worse or better. Medications, such as lactulose or rifaximin, are used to treat he, and dietary indiscretion as well as infection or worsening liver function will make he worse. ...Read more

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Has anyone been around a person with hepatic encephalopathy? How bad are they?

Has anyone been around a person with hepatic encephalopathy? How bad are they?

Mild to severe: Encephalopathy is a generalized description of an altered mental state that is caused by a medical condition. This is seen as confusion, agitation, lethargy, and/or severe somnolence. It is commonly seen in patients with cirrhosis (hepatic encephalopathy). The severity can range from very mild, almost unnoticeable, to complete unconsciousness. ...Read more

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Diet for hepatic encephalopathy with diabetes?

Difficult: Low protein, low simple carb is the simplest answer but you really need to get training from a specialized dietician. ...Read more

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Can bloodletting help someone with hepatic encephalopathy?

Can bloodletting help someone with hepatic encephalopathy?

No. (?): "Bloodletting" refers to the ancient and long-discredited practice of bleeding someone to remove "evil humors" (another long-outdated concept). "Therapeutic phlebotomy" is used to treat diseases that cause overproduction of red blood cells or their constituents eg hemochromatosis, polycythemia vera, porphyria cutanea tarda. It is NOT indicated for hepatic encephalopathy. ...Read more

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What is the difference between uremia and hepatic encephalopathy?

See below: Both can cause Metabolic Encephalopathies, or brain dysfunction. Uremia due to kidney failure, hepatitis due to liver failure. The pathways and toxicity are respectively different but the net effect on brain may be very similar. Clinicians can easily distinguish the two entities. ...Read more

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Hospitalised with hepatic encephalopathy and now at home..Can we still take warafin?

See hepatologist: If you have hepatic encephalopathy, it would suggest that there is significant liver damage. Since the liver is the source of proteins that allow you to stop bleeding, and Coumadin (warfarin) is used to block the production of these proteins too, the combination is very risky to adjust. Make sure that someone with expertise in managing anticoagulation is aware of cirrhosis and monitors closely. ...Read more

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Whats the difference between hepatic encephalopathy and portosystemic encephalopathy?

Hepatic encephalop: These are essentially the same. Portosystemic encephalopathy may occur in fulminant hepatitis caused by viruses, drugs, or toxins, but it more commonly occurs in cirrhosis or other chronic disorders when extensive portosystemic collaterals have developed as a result of portal hypertension due to the changes in the liver structure. It may also occur after portocaval shunts. ...Read more

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What is the treatment for hepatic encephalopathy?

Underlying cause: The treatment of hepatic encephalopathy is three fold:
1) treat underlying cause of liver injury if possible ( so stop liver toxic drugs, steroids for autoimmune liver disease)
2) in patients with chronic liver disease, treat problems that can worsen the situation and cause encephalopathy such as infections, etc.
3) drugs to lower the ammonia levels, ammonia being too high in this condition. ...Read more

Dr. Michael DePietro
139 doctors shared insights

Encephalopathy (Definition)

Encephalon means brain, pathy means abnormal, so the full term means abnormal brain. I see the statement used by many of my colleagues, but it is not a diagnosis, ...Read more


Hepatic (Definition)

Hepatic refers to something that is ...Read more


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