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Cirrhosis is a medical condition in which healthy liver tissue is replaced with scar tissue. The scar tissue blocks the flow of blood through the liver and slows the liver’s ability to process nutrients, hormones, drugs, and natural toxins. Cirrhosis is a late stage of fibrosis of the liver caused by many different forms of liver diseases and conditions, such as hepatitis and chronic alcoholism or viral infections.

The liver is in the upper right side of the abdomen below the ribs and performs many essential body functions, being the largest solid organ in the body. It performs many important functions, including:

  • Making blood proteins that aid in clotting, transporting oxygen, and helping the immune system.
  • Storing excess nutrients and returning some of the nutrients to the bloodstream.
  • Manufacturing bile, a substance needed to help digest food.
  • Helps in storing the body sugar (glucose) in the form of glycogen.
  • Helps the body to get rid of harmful substances in the bloodstream, including drugs and alcohol.
  • Breaking down saturated fat and producing cholesterol.

Signs and Symptoms of Cirrhosis

The symptoms of cirrhosis depends on the stage of the illness. In the beginning stages, there may not be any symptoms. An early sign of cirrhosis is retaining fluid and salt leading to a swollen ankle or leg but can further lead to significant fluid retention in the abdomen (ascites).

Some common symptoms are:

  • Nose bleeding
  • Jaundice (yellow discoloration)
  • Small spider-shaped arteries underneath the skin
  • Weight loss/weakness
  • Anorexia
  • Itchy skin
  • Poor memory and ability to think
  • Abdominal swelling
  • Swelling of the legs
  • Impotence
  • Gynecomastia (when males start to develop breast tissue)

Causes of Cirrhosis

Some of the common causes of the Cirrhosis are as follows:

  • Chronic (long-term) viral infections of the liver (hepatitis types Band C)
  • Fatty liver associated with obesity
  • Diabetics
  • Consumption of lots of alcohol
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Glycogen storage diseases

Treatment Options

Treatment for cirrhosis is based on the level when it is diagnosed. Some treatment options include:

  • Medical Management :
    • Beta blockers or nitrates (for portal hypertension)
    • Intravenous antibiotics (to treat peritonitis that can occur with ascites)
  • Lifestyle Modification :
    • Quit drinking (if the cirrhosis is caused by alcohol)
    • Lactulose and a low protein diet (to treat encephalopathy)
  • Surgical Procedures :
    • Banding procedures (used to control bleeding from oesophageal varices)
    • Haemodialysis (to purify the blood)
    • Liver transplantation is last option, when other treatment fails


The various options for surgical procedures are:

  • Band Ligation
  • Trans jugular Intrahepatic Portosystemic Shunting (TIPS)
  • Other Surgical Shunts: The splenorenal shunt and portacaval shunt
  • Paracentesis
  • Liver Transplantation

A liver transplant is only necessary when:

  • Complications of cirrhosis cannot be controlled with medical therapy
  • The liver becomes non-functional

The Liver transplant surgery is a very complex procedure which is performed under general anaesthesia. Procedure usually takes 4 to 14 hours. During the operation, surgeons will remove failed liver and will replace it with the healthy donor liver.

The surgeon will disconnect diseased liver from bile ducts and blood vessels before removing it. The blood flowing into your liver will be blocked or sent through a machine to return to the rest of your body. The surgeon will then put the healthy liver in place and reconnect it to the bile ducts and blood vessels. The blood will then flow into new liver. You're then taken to the intensive care unit to begin recovery.

One must take immunosuppressant drugs after the procedure, throughout the life so that the body does not reject the new liver and for preserving its function.

Are You a Candidate?

If you are consuming alcohol from long time, or if you have an an exposure to hepatitis C, or have a family history of autoimmune diseases, or other risk factors then you are a candidate for cirrhosis. Some physical examination signs are:

  • Pale skin
  • Yellow eyes (jaundice)
  • Reddened palms
  • Hand tremors
  • An enlarged liver
  • Small testicles
  • Excess breast tissue (in men)

Some investigations can reveal the level of damage to the liver. These tests are:

  • Complete blood count (to reveal anaemia)
  • Coagulation blood tests (to see how quickly blood clots)
  • Albumin (to test for a protein produced in the liver)
  • Liver function tests
  • Alpha fetoprotein (a liver cancer screening)
  • Upper endoscopy (to see if oesophageal varices are present)
  • Ultrasound scan of the liver
  • MRI of the abdomen
  • CT scan of the abdomen
  • Liver biopsy (the definitive test for cirrhosis)


Some of the preventive measures are as follows:

  • Safe sex with condoms can reduce the risk of getting hepatitis B or C.
  • Vaccination against hepatitis B.
  • Becoming a non-drinker.
  • Eating a balanced diet/Lifestyle Modification.
  • Adequate exercise

Expected Results

The damage caused by cirrhosis can’t be undone but still the liver can be treated and can be made functional even if two-third of the function has been damaged or become non-functional.

If long-term hepatitis is the cause for cirrhosis, treating the infection can lower the chances of more problems if the damage is diagnosed early. If you are obese or have diabetes, losing weight and controlling your blood sugar can lessen damage caused by fatty liver disease. If the damage is caused by alcohol abuse, you can manage the cirrhosis better if you stop drinking.

Recovery Timeline

The damage caused by cirrhosis can’t be undone but still the After the procedure, patient is taken to the intensive care unit, where there is very careful monitoring of all body functions, including the liver. Once the patient is transferred to the ward, the frequency of blood testing, etc. is decreased, eating is allowed, and physiotherapy is prescribed to regain muscle strength. The drug or drugs to prevent rejection are initially given by vein, but later by mouth.

The average hospital stay after liver transplant procedure is two weeks to three weeks. Some patients may be discharged in less time, while others may be in the hospital for much longer, depending on how the new liver is working and on complications that may arise. One must be prepared for both possibilities.

Cost of Procedure

SNo Name of Procedure Cost in India (USD)
1 Liver Transplantation 34000-38000

Why MedicoExperts

At MedicoExperts, we understand the significance of your health and well-being. Our aim is to provide you the best options and outcomes for your Cirrhosis Treatment in India at our top associate hospitals in India. We understand that while you choose to travel abroad for your Cirrhosis Treatment in India, you would surely look for cost savings and that is why we have special negotiated prices for you and offering you best possible prices for the top quality of facility and services.

We would also provide you end to end assistance for your medical trip to India and shall provide complete solution for your Cirrhosis Treatment - right from assisting you with the visa, hotel arrangements, airport pick up and drop, inland transfers, money exchange or sight-seeing and all other concierge services. We thus assure you hassle-free arrangements for evaluations, surgery, recuperation, stay and travel in India.

For more information and getting a tailor-made treatment plan for your Cirrhosis treatment in India, please mail us your medical history at enquiry@medicoexperts.com.

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