Cirrhosis stage 4: I was diagnosed with... - British Liver Trust

British Liver Trust

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Cirrhosis stage 4


I was diagnosed with stage 4 cirrhosis a year ago I also have oesophageal varies where I had 6bands I went to the doctor last week and my liver is now stable, but I don't know much about my condition and the stage it is at has anyone else been through this? Or know any information about cirrhosis at this stage? I have been clean and sober since being diagnosed and control my diet i.e. High protein and no salt but would really be grateful for any information and advice???

7 Replies

Hi Leanne, cirrhosis is know as stage 4 liver so that's what that 'staging' description is.

You must also have portal hypertension if you've had varices to the degree they needed banding but if your liver is now stable and you arn't displaying as many symptoms then your liver has gone into a compensated state ............. it is coping and doing the majority of it's major tasks. Your liver carries out around 500 different jobs within the body so now that it is cirrhotic you might find that you have odd other niggles and you'll be surprised to find the liver is the root of them (i.e. some people feel cold all the time, people have hormone issues, loss of libido and more).

You've done a brilliant job getting clean and sober ............. keep up the good work because now your liver has stopped being assaulted you'll give it a chance to recover. Cirrhosis used to be thought to be irriversible but recent medical thinking has begun to say that even cirrhosis can reverse to a certain degree so look after your liver.

Now that you do have a diagnosis of cirrhosis you should be kept a close eye on, although they can't treat cirrhosis they will need to treat any symptoms that having cirrhosis can throw up.

It is usual to be kept under the watch of a hospital consultant either a gastroenterologist or better still a liver specialist hepatologist. You should you be seeing them every 6 months or so and having already had varices banded should perhaps be getting a regular endoscopy exam. You should have regular blood tests to check on liver and kidney function plus should have a 6 monthly liver/abdominal ultrasound to check on all your organs but mainly to check that no cancers have popped up in your liver ...... a cirrhotic liver is more prone to them, The 6 monthly scan schedule together with a blood test called Alpha Fetoprotein (AFP) check that no tumours have arrived and should they do so the short space between these scans lets tumours be treated quickly.

It's more about looking after your liver from here on in and dealing with the issues a cirrhotic liver lead to.

My hubby is currently deemed as stable but I can still go down the cirrhosis list of symptoms on the British Liver Trust page and tick off a great many of the symptoms he displays day in day out. He is under a local gastroenterologist whom he sees 6 monthly, he also sees a liver consultant at Edinburgh 6 monthly, has a now annual endoscopy (after 2 years of intenstive banding with 42 bands applied his varices were eradicated), 6 monthly ultrasound scan and blood tests at each clinic appointment.

He has to take medicine for portal hypertensive gastropathy, steroids to keep his auto-immune liver disease at bay, treatment for osteopenia caused by poor mineral intake (and also the steroids), Lactulose and Rifaximin to treat his symptoms of Hepatic Encephalopathy and a few more bits.

The illness has had a massive impact on his life but after 5 years he is gradually 'coming to terms' with the limitations and we just try to live every fitter day to the max even if he pays for it in chronic fatigue afterwards.

Any further questions just ask away.


Leanne77 in reply to AyrshireK

Thank you soooo much for all this information its muchly appreciated and it's helped me understand it all a lot better hope ur husband is ok too thank you again

Dort1234 in reply to AyrshireK

Hope you don't mind me asking Katie I see you say your husband has cirrhosis but did I see a post or maybe I read it wrong that you have it also?

AyrshireK in reply to Dort1234

No, I don't have it. Just hubby and I accompany him to all appointments, his transplant assessment etc. etc. He gets on with the business of living his life the best he can and I sort of manage the health side of things.

Katie xx

Dort1234 in reply to AyrshireK

Hi katie. Well he is very lucky to have you. You sure have done your research i have learnt something myself from your post thanks...

mrsmerlin in reply to Dort1234

You will come to learn we are all lucky to have Kate around - she is a mine of information and support.


Hi my liver specialist told me to follow the FOOD MAP DIET having cirrhosis also stage 4. Definitely no salt garlic or onions.The food map diet helps with the gas that blows your stomach up.You can regulate it to what effects you.I have never been a drinker it always gave me extremely bad hangovers.but I had a blood transfusion in the early 80's and got hep c.I have just finished my third lot of treatment and hoping to stay negative.But have to have tests in 3 months to see if any tumours have grown.One of our best friends has just been rushed to hospital in a ambulance and he is at the end stages of his life from liver cancer.Very sad.everyone has to make sure they get their scans and blood tests done.Even though Tim was misdiagnosed! A very sad day

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