British Liver Trust
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Cirrhosis Worry

Hi, after the death of my mother at the end of October 2017 I have been drinking almost daily between 8-12 pints of 4% larger almost daily and am now trying to stop. I was a previous heavy drinker in my 20-30's but only have only drank sporadically up until this heavy drinking episode. I had a fibroscan done at a liver roadshow earlier in the year which was 4.2 Kpa and the consultant said no damage. My question is this could this episode of heavy drinking have caused me to get cirrhosis in your opinion as I am now so worried and tapering off the alcohol. Thanks in advance for any help on this.

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Benham, just go have some lab work and please stop drinking. If you can't do it on your own...please find a doctor.

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Hi Benham, my mother passed away in September of 2016; I too, was a drinker but got worst after her departure. My binging, unfortunately after she died, led to cirrosis in August 2017. Now I am clean, but too late for me- having to change my life style and stay sober so I can live longer. Good luck and don’t give up. It is very difficult, to cope with a loss and being an addict at the same time.

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Mereocal, you posted to me instead of Benham.but i am sorry to hear about your mother. I hope all goes well with your new diagnoses. I am a caretaker for my father-in-law due to him being sick in the last month. He was an evening drinker of wine, about 4 glasses/night with dinner. i took him to the doc and all lab work was good..alt 17 ast 18 albumin 4.8 and alk. was about 56..and he also had high platelets of 279.We are waiting on a GGT to come in today or tomorrow. I understand, the drinking with the loss because he lost his only son(my husband) and he started the wine every night. He has stopped drinking and I hope he continues..

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It is highly likely. Please stop drinking it is not going to solve any problems or bring your Mother back. I'm sure she would not be pleased if she knew her death had caused you to drink.

I suggest you get some bereavement councelling. Get exercising. .. walking, running, cycling etc etc. It's a wonderful tonic and helps prevent depression. Look after yourself

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Thanks for the kind kind replies, I am tapering down now. Laura009, did you mean highly likely or un likely for cirrhosis as I've heard it takes years of heavy drinking to get cirrhosis and not all heavy drinkers do, I am no expert but I would have thought 3 and a half months of heavy drinking would lead to some damage but not cirrhosis.

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Yes highly likely to contribute to cirrhosis. My husband died 8 years ago at the age of just 54 of liver failure, kidney failure and bronco pneumonia all caused by alcohol abuse. Leaving me to bring up an eleven and 17 year old alone.

Alcohol abuse solves no problems. It creates hell for the family of the abuser and is an horrific death to witness. Please avoid it at all costs get professional help if you need to, to quit for good .

I lost my Mum 2 years ago ( not through drink I must add) The last thing I thought to do would be to drink my way through the grief. I make sure I stay fit and happy both for her and my family and for myself. I still miss her I always will and I still cry but I have a clear head at all times. Alcohol will only cloud your mind and make you miserable and depressed ... even more so than the loss of your loved one. She wouldn't want you to live like that would she?

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I appreciate your kind reply Laura009, but if 3 and a half months of heavy drinking led to cirrhosis then 9 out of 10 of my friends would now be dead with it, most were in the army or navy, they have drank like this for 20 or more years, I had a healthy liver 6 months ago and according to my hepatoligist I have more chance of dying of a heart attack, than cirrhosis,liver failure is a different matter, none of the facts I have read or been told by a specialiast have lead me to believe that this much drinkinking would cause a healthy liver, note healthy liver to develop cirrhosis, note cirrhosis not liver failure, if so most students would have cirrhosis, I specifically asked about the chances of cirrhosis in 3 and a half months not liver failure. Sorry about your husband and I am not trying to advocate drinking but if this short amount of time lead to end stage liver disease not many would be alive today, how long did your husband drink. Most info on the net and from my specialist says it takes at least 10 years of heavy daily drinking to cause cirrhosis, I asked the question for as much factual information as I could get. Sorry again I do not support drinking in any form or fashion and every life lost because of it is one too many. You have basically said I have cirrhosis after this binge when I have drank for much longer and have not got it, that is a very uninformed and scary statement to make.

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I do not believe that you could have developed Chorrohiss in a 3 month period but that also depends on your drinking prior to the 3 month binge.

Chorrohiss can develop over a period of time or it can be acute develop very quickly. Mine was acute meaning by the time it was diagnosed it was too late for me to give it a chance to heal by itself. The damage was done and irreversible so now I am waiting for a transplant to save my life. Most likely you are fine but make sure that you have bloodwork done to see if there is any indication of the beginning of the desease. If there is quite immediately because I wouldn't wish this desease on my worse enemy.

Good Luck moving forward!!!

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P.S no offence or harm meant I am just looking for as much factual information as I can get.

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Why would you ask the question if you know the answer you want to hear. Stop drinking and move on see a doctor and get some tests done.

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It sounds to me you are trying to justify your lack of willingness to admit you are an alcoholic; been there, done that and unfortunately, I have a very dear friend who, no matter the threats of his wife leaving him, still tells me he is not an alcoholic. The truth is nobody knows in how long, and what quantity one must consume to develop cirrosis . In my case it took 5 years of on and off one bottle of wine per day. In your case, you will need to wait and see.

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Different people are affected by different amounts of alcohol. If you want to minimise your chances of getting cirrhosis which, if you continue drinking, will lead to liver and multi organ failure, or maximise your chances of living a happy, healthy long life then don't drink. You must know it's addictive ? And it doesn't take much before it can spiral out of control. But if you think you have your alcohol consumption under control and it's not going to affect you then well done, carry on .... good luck

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Sorry if it sounds like I am trying to justify my drinking, I know that I am an alcoholic believe me and those who are know the monster struggle we have with it. I am in no way trying to justify my drinking and am tapering off it now. My question was just more specific, could I have developed cirrhosis in this 3 and a half months binge, as I am very frightened. Tests including a fibroscan showed my liver was healthy before this binge. Sorry again if it seems I was justifying my drinking, I certainly am not and thank you all for your kind replies and information.

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Hi Benham, as tests some months ago show your liver was healthy then it is unlikely that you will have developed cirrhosis after a few months heavy drinking. Your liver won't have liked it though and you can develop alcohol related hepatitis (liver inflammation) & this can be symptomatic. You don't need to be a full on drinking every day alcoholic to develop liver problems with alcohol, if you have a predisposition to liver issues even social drinking can be an issue whereas (and we've all seen it) there are some people who do drink to excess who seem to 'get away with it' - this can be just because they don't have this predisposition to liver ill health.

You've scared yourself and perhaps this is the point where you do sit up and take note of your drinking and going forward it is important to start looking after your liver and you are being wise in reducing your alcohol use and hopefully can get to a position of zero alcohol intake.

It's not a forgone conclusion that all drinkers will develop liver issues but why take the risk? I am sitting here with a hubby who has never drank in all his days and yet has advanced cirrhosis of the liver - his liver ill health being an auto-immune condition which did its damage then died off, there was never a chance for him to stop, control or reverse his condition but believe me if he had the chance you had to prevent his condition for taking hold he'd have grabbed the opportunity with both hands.

You have that chance, do take heed of your own fears and deal with your drinking before it possibly does lead to issues. The British Liver Trust has guidance on alcohol and its effects on the liver at :- britishlivertrust.org.uk/li... It might be worth a read.

All the best, Katie

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Thank you all for your kind replies and information, they are much appreciated.

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