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Doctor insights on: Primary Biliary Cirrhosis Symptoms

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What are early signs & symptoms of primary biliary cirrhosis?

What are early signs & symptoms of primary biliary cirrhosis?

None: Early on primary biliary cirrhosis can be associated with little or no symptoms at all, just like many chronic liver diseases. As the disease progresses, however, many people start experiencing chronic fatigue & weakness, jaundice and itching (from bilirubin build up in skin), followed by complications of cirrhosis such as ascites & malnutrition. ...Read more

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Dr. Lynne Weixel
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Biliary (Definition)

Biliary means anything related to the production, storage, secretion, or flow of bile, whether in the liver, bile ducts, gallbladder, ...Read more


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Is primary biliary cirrhosis hereditary?

Is primary biliary cirrhosis hereditary?

Basically no: There's a pair of genes that carry the ability to develop the disease and these run in families, but it's not inherited like sickle cell, huntington's or some of the other familiar entities. http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/151640.php. ...Read more

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What exactly is primary biliary cirrhosis?

What exactly is primary biliary cirrhosis?

Liver disease: Primary biliary cirrhosis is an autoimmune liver disease seen most commonly in women in the 4th to 5th decade of life. It generally presents with unexplained itching and occasionally jaundice. It is frequently found on routing screening liver tests which may show an elevated alkaline phosphotase. Though not curable it is treatable and treatment slows the progression to cirrhosis. ...Read more

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How can I treat primary biliary cirrhosis ?

Ursodiol: There is not much available to treat primary biliary cirrhosis, but ursodiol helps normalize the liver enzymes. For other therapies you should discuss with a hepatologist. ...Read more

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What is the cause of primary biliary cirrhosis?

Autoimmune: An autoimmune disorder in which the body attacks it's own liver. ...Read more

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What can be done for primary biliary cirrhosis?

Number of things: If caught early, there are medications, particularly ursodeoxycholic acid (actigall) which can slow it down. Preventing and treating complications is also important, especially high pressure in the portal vein, which can be treated with beta blockers (inderal (propranolol) and others) and sometimes surgery. Itching, fatigue and other symptoms can be treated as well, but liver transplant is needed when severe. ...Read more

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Can you tell me about primary biliary cirrhosis?

Liver disease: Chronic disease of the liver from scarring of the biliary ducts. Probably an autoimmune disease. There are medications to help with this disease, but you need close follow up with a GI doc. Good luck. ...Read more

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What can I expect if I have primary biliary cirrhosis?

Maybe liver failure: Primary biliary cirrhosis is an insidious disease that tends to be progressive over time. The small ducts that drain bile from the liver will narrow and prevent adequate drainage of bile to the intestine. The liver will experience damage with years of inadequate bile drainage and eventually severe scarring (cirrhosis) occurs. With cirrhosis, the only option is liver transplantation for best chance. ...Read more

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Has anyone survived primary biliary cirrhosis for long?

Yes: There are some new medications that have been effective for stopping the progression of primary biliary cirrhosis, particularly urso- deoxycholic acid. In addition, liver transplanation can be lifesaving, and patients can live normal lifespans after liver transplantation, although the need for anti- rejection drugs can affect the quality of life and cause complications which shorten life as well. ...Read more

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How does one effectively treat primary biliary cirrhosis?

How does one effectively treat primary biliary cirrhosis?

Not a great answer : Unfortunately, there is no cure. The autoimmune disorder destroys the liver over time. The treatments help to relieve the symptoms (ursodiol, anti-itching meds, anti-inflammatory meds, immune suppressing meds etc.) and if the disease progresses to final stages, liver transplant is the only really treatment. ...Read more

Upper Abdomen (Definition)

Draw a transverse line through the umbilicus and the upper abdomen includes every part of the belly above this line and below the ...Read more


Dr. Linda Callaghan
63 doctors shared insights

Primary Biliary Cirrhosis (Definition)

A condition where the bile ducts of the liver break down. This causes a buildup of bile in the liver, including ...Read more