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Clin Liver Dis. 2019 Feb;23(1):11-23. doi: 10.1016/j.cld.2018.09.001.

Histopathology of Alcohol-Related Liver Diseases.

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Sandra Atlas Bass Center for Liver Diseases Department of Medicine Northwell Health, 400 Community Drive, Manhasset, NY 11030, USA. Electronic address:
Department of Pathology, The Department of Veteran Affairs New York Harbor Healthcare System, 800 Poly Place, Brooklyn, NY 11209, USA.


Excessive alcohol consumption can lead to a spectrum of liver histopathology, including steatosis, steatohepatitis, foamy degeneration, fatty liver with cholestasis, and cirrhosis. Although variability in sampling and pathologist interpretation are of some concern, liver biopsy remains the gold standard for distinguishing between steatohepatitis and noninflammatory histologic patterns of injury that can also cause the clinical syndrome of alcohol-related hepatitis. Liver biopsy is not routinely recommended to ascertain a diagnosis of alcohol-related liver disease in patients with an uncertain alcohol history, because the histologic features of alcohol-related liver diseases can be found in other diseases, including nonalcoholic steatohepatitis and drug-induced liver injury.


Alcohol-related liver disease; Alcoholic fatty liver with cholestasis; Alcoholic foamy degeneration; Alcoholic hepatitis; Alcoholic steatohepatitis; Histology; Liver biopsy


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