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Clin Liver Dis. 2005 Feb;9(1):103-34.

Treatment of alcoholic hepatitis.

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  • 1Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology A30, Cleveland Clinic Foundation, 9500 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44195, USA. OSHEAR@ccf.org

Abstract

Cirrhosis and its sequelae are responsible for close to 2% of all causes of death in the United States. Some studies have suggested that the costs of liver disease may account for as much as 1% of all health care spending, with alcohol-related liver disease (ALD) representing a major portion. It accounts for between 40% to 50% of all deaths due to cirrhosis, with an accompanying rate of progression of up to 60% in patients with pure alcoholic fatty liver over 10 years, and a 5-year survival rate as low as 35% if patients continue to drink. A subset of patients with ALD will develop an acute, virulent form of injury, acute alcoholic hepatitis, which has a substantially worse prognosis. Despite enormous progress in understanding the physiology of this disease, much remains unknown, and therefore, a consensus regarding effective therapy for ALD is lacking. Conventional therapy is still based largely on abstinence from alcohol, as well as general supportive and symptomatic care. Unfortunately, hepatocellular damage may progress despite these measures. Multiple treatment interventions for both the short- and long-term morbidity and mortality of this disease have been proposed, but strong disagreement exists among experts regarding the value of any of the proposed specific therapeutic interventions.

PMID:
15763232
DOI:
10.1016/j.cld.2004.11.004
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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