British Liver Trust
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can i have some advice

I am worried and concerned my husband drinks way too much. he drinks 12 cans a night week days and wekends can drink 16 or more a night. he doesnt get drunk as is so immune as done this for such a long time. lately he is feeling sick every morning and every evening. yday he was sick and was blood in it he refuses to seek medical help as wont admit he has a problem. not sure how long his body can cope with all of this abuse he is only 35. do you think he is suffering liver failure. he has small red blood vessels coming on his face. doesnt have lpss of appetite or swelling of stomach legs etc signs are feeling sick morning and at night any advice will be great thank you

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Hello Dawn, this must be very hard on you as someone who has alcohol-related issues are very hard to get through to. I speak from personal experience and have suffer with all the main problems associated with alcohol. It sounds very mush like your poor husband is suffering from esophageal varices. Get him to hospital as soon as. I had my bleed for 24-hours before I went to hospital. I couldn't keep anything down, not even water. He'll most likely feel very dehydrated, and will need to have an endoscopy to establish the amount of damage done. I have put together my own alcohol-related website, and have explained about all the medical situations that are associated with this condition. Please above all remain strong. But this condition needs treating and it won't heal it's self. taep.eu have a look at the section, "Medical Consequences".

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I know and agree but he refuses to go to gp or hospitals says hates the places and even though admits to me it scares him to know he is killing himself wont get help just continues to do so, i feel helpless it does cause arguments as he wont listen or do anything about it and continues to drink excessively so then we argue and i say he is selfish. he says well if it us time to go it is time we all die in the end. he has bloated stomach and has gained weight similar to a large beer belly, has only threw up blood once saturday morning and cause hasnt happened since now thinks he is fine was a one off and pbly threw up too hard and was he burst a blood vessel. he is alwys tired which i say is because he drinks too much alwys moaning and depressed paranoid i am not interested in him anymore alwys feeling sorry for himself. i google all symptoms and tjings to try to work out if he is ill or has liver failure but still doesnt listen

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My heart goes out to you. This can be so hard as us guys can be so stupid and stubborn sometimes. I guess it's like having toothache and not wanting to go to the dentist. It's doubly hard on you, as he's going to see you as nagging him all the time. Does he have any family, brother sister etc. Someone else who can talk to him. He's going to need a lot of care and support.

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yeah he is both stupid and stubborn he has family but all let him get on with it. i cant get through to him he knows he is killing himself he knows he is making himself ill and says already done the damage to body now so is too late so continues. i just wonder how long till it happens and he dies and what damage he has and is doing to himself.

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Sadly he's not even going to be a suitable candidate for a liver transplant as they normally insist upon a person being free of alcohol for at least 6-months and must make a commitment to pack up drinking for good. Recovery is a long journey but I'm living proof that it can happen.

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also forgot to mention has lots of tiny red blood vessels on feet and feet am purple/blue and has varicose veins well look like varicose veins has one on upper leg size of a large pea that can put finger in sticks out leg and has lots of thick varicose veins coming off it has this also anything to do with anything

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also forgot to say got constant heartburn

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Gastritis and possible acid reflux. Too much alcohol strips the lining of the stomach. He would (if he went to his GP) be given a PPI like omeprazole for this.

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The amount he drinks is worrying, to say the least. Whether he has liver problems can only be found out by having blood tests and an abdominal ultrasound on his liver.

What is definitely concerning concerning is the blood in his sick, which sometimes can be fresh (blood colour) or can look like coffee granules. It could be oesophageal varices and this needs to be treated.

In an ideal world, you would get him down to the GP today, who would make a referral appointment with a gastro, who would then do comprehensive bloods, an ultrasound and an endoscopy. But most people who drink too much, know that they are not in a great way and have a great fear of being told that. The good news is, that most people who stop drinking return to good health quite quickly.

Unfortunately, all long term heavy drinkers have the brain neurologically changed and this makes it nigh on impossible to give up (with out some major life changing event). Fortunately there is medication that is able to combat this. Of course, getting the person to see their GP and even contemplate giving up (when their life revolves around alcohol) is often a mammoth task.

You have obviously done some research, by mentioning the symptoms he has and doesn't have. If you have more questions, then please ask.

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hi thanks for reply. i constantly research but as alwys say should never google things and doesnt alwys mean it is what it says, all you say is true and refuses point blank to go to hptal or gp.!! and cause was only sick once feels was a one off i didnt see it but he said was bright red if that means anything.

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May I ask please how old he is? You say your not interested in him anymore. You obviously care a lot as you wouldn't be looking and trying to help. He can come back from this, it's not too late. But only he can want to give up drinking and be prepared to give drinking.

Do you both share the same family GP?

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hi richard he is only 35.!! drank since was 15ish but drank more as yrs went on. no we do not have same gp his is different area to me. we are married i love him more than anything but he seems obsessed i aint interested and i am seeing someone else i personally think it is his low self esteem with broken blood vessels on face bad varicosey veins on legs that stick out purple blue feet with red blood vessels and huge belly think he feels i am going to look elsewhere which is not the case.

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The huge belly is almost definitely ascites. A build of fluid between in the stomach peritonial cavity. It would need to be drained and it can harbour dangerous infections.

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do you think veins on legs that are varicose looking anything to do with variceal bleeding and esophageal varices. or are they 9nly inside body.

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No, the oesophageal varices come from portal hypertension of the liver. If he saw his GP, he would be given carvedilol to help with this.

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When the blood supply to the liver becomes blocked through scaring of the liver, the body tries to re-route blood from other sources, this are predominantly in the portal hypertension vein and the oesophagus. These tiny veins seem to grow everywhere as the body is just trying to improve the blood supply to the liver. As the pressure in these tiny veins builds up they burst. You also said he has an enlarged abdomen. This could be Ascites, which if not treated could be fatal. This is a build up of fluid, which if untreated will build up and push other organs up into the chest cavity, and will put too much pressure on the heart.

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Good for you. 35 is far to young to throw it all away. And the crazy thing is he doesn't really have to. This bleed should be used as a wakeup call. As soon as I had my variceal bleed (3 Dec 2014) I spent 3-days in hospital. (I had my final drink on the 2nd Dec). Sadly for me my liver was too badly damaged and I started to develop tumours on the liver. I had a liver transplant 10-months ago. All this was through my own fault. But there is a life without alcohol, and each morning when I get dressed, I look at my scar and thank my donor. Stay positive Dawn, and try not to be too hard on him. This is now an addiction so it's not his fault.

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thank you i am a very positive strong minded person who has lot of patience. i know it sounds bad but needs something bad to happen to wake him up to it we have 2 small children i also have 6 other children who he has brought up and he treats as his own so isnt as if doesnt have a good enough reason i do not drink so it isnt as if it is hard i prefer a cup of tea alwys have jist wish he was more like me. thank you for replies and advice

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Hi Dawn,

Firstly, welcome to the forum. There are many wonderful followers on here who will support you.

You may like to visit The British liver trust website, we have a lot of information and publications that will be of use to you.

britishlivertrust.org.uk/

The situation yourself and your husband is in sounds very complex and highly stressful.

No one on the forum is medically qualified to diagnose your husband.

It is vital that he is seen by his own doctors as soon as possible for assessment, help and guidance.

If you would like to discuss this further, our helpline is open 10-2.30pm Monday to friday on 0800 652 7330

Warm wishes,

BLT Admin

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Hi Dawn

Blt are right but does your area have a support group for families who have a partner who drinks alcohol? Until he is willing to go to see the GP it going to be hard for all of you, but getting group support for yourself with family members in a similar position is helpful. A friend of mine used to drink himself, his wife was a bit further down the line. He stopped but found the family support group he goes to really helpful. His wife has also stopped now.

Hope this helps.

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