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COMPLICATIONS OF ALCOHOLIC LIVER DISEASE AND DIAGNOSTIC MARKERS

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Author(s): Vanja Ničković | Jelenka Nikolić | Gordana Kocić | Milena Ilić | Boris Djindjić

Journal: Acta Medica Medianae
ISSN 0365-4478

Volume: 50;
Issue: 4;
Start page: 55;
Date: 2011;
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Keywords: alcoholic liver damage | serum marker.

ABSTRACT
Alcoholism is one of the leading diseases affecting people’s health and immunity worldwide. Nearly 30 thousand people in the USA die from chronic liver damage. The liver is the central organ in the metabolism of alcohol. Alcohol is primarily a hepatotoxic agent. Hepatotoxicity of alcohol is clinically manifested by the development of alcoholic fatty liver, alcoholic hepatitis and alcoholic cirrhosis. It is characterized by appropriate symptomatology, depending on the degree of liver damage. Excessive use of alcohol for a long period of time, along with malnutrition, genetic and ethnic predisposition, leads to alcoholic cirrhosis and the development of its complications. Portal hypertension damages other organs and organ systems, causing hepatopulmonary syndrome, hepatorenal syndrome, hepatic encephalopathy, spontaneous bacterial peritonitis, etc. For these reasons, alcoholism reduction is given priority, as well as reduction of morbidity and mortality of people with alcoholic chronic liver damage. Therefore, early diagnosis of alcohol abuse is necessary, as well as timely diagnosis of different degrees of alcoholic liver damage. The diagnosis of chronic alcoholic liver damage is set on the basis of confirmed data of alcohol consumption; liver function test (serum markers aminotransferase, gammaglutamyl transferase, prothrombin time, serum bilirubin and albumin level); serum markers of liver fibrosis. Fibrosis markers are directly involved in sedimentation and dissolution of extracellular matrix, i.e. in the process of fibrogenesis and fibrinolysis of liver tissues. They include markers and enzymes of metabolism, as well as cytokines and chemokines.
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