Discussions By Condition: Liver conditions

Can Anyone Help Me With Advanced Cirrhosis Of The Liver

Posted In: Liver conditions 218 Replies
  • Posted By: Anonymous
  • September 9, 2006
  • 07:11 AM

Hello There ,

I was wondering does anybody have any information for me on advanced stage of cirrhosis of the liver ?

Has anyone ever dealt with a loved one with with advanced cirrhosis ?

My father in law was diagnosed with advanced stage of cirrhosis of the liver yesterday september 9th 2006.

My father in law is an alcoholic , i have known him for 12 years and during this time he has consumed on average 5 litres of wine per day .

I want to know what to expect down the track with his condition , i have read up alot on this and it is really devasting to me about his prognosis.

A few months ago he was stating that his legs were playing up , and i suggested that he should see a doctor to discuss this with him , but he is very stubborn and in denial about his alcohol problem , so the doctors were out of the question, after weeks and weeks of me pressuring him he finally agreed to go , only so i would get of his back .

The doctor did blood test and we got the result back yesterday and he was advised that his liver is completly gone its not functioning at all , he was told that he needs to see a liver specialist now , apparantly he is jaundice badly , his stomach sticks out like he is pregnant and on the left side of his stomach he has this huge mass that pops out i havent a clue what it is , the doctor said his legs were breaking down due to the fact that his liver is gone.The doc said that seeing the liver is completely gone his brain will stop functioning well soon.

I have these test result with me and i have looked them up on the internet and its scarring me really bad

alp 126

ggt 455

mcv 110

platelet count 96,000

Does anyone know what these numbers exactly mean?

since yesterday he has not being drinking as much , but even 1 drink at this stage is putting him in even more danger

the doctor said if he completly gives up the alcohol , changes his diet , lose weight , and excercise he may have 1-2 good years in him , this is so hard for me to comprehend , i cant even think of him not being here , he is only 61.

Has anyone been through anything like this before , my husband and i feel so very alone , and when i talk to people about it , people arent very nice they say well " what do you expect " he is of course an alcoholic ,:mad:

What will happen to him in the near future , any information about this would be greatly appreciated , i thank you all for taking the time out to read this.

Warmest regards jade amy

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  • I can't help you but I feel the same way with my dad. He had a tummy the size of someone about 7 months pregnant and still kept saying that he was just retaining water and that nothing was wrong with him. I think the cause of their disease is embarrassing for them so they don't like anyone to know or tell them to stop drinking. My dad won't even let my mom tell anybody even family. We are a little more confused about my dad's condition. The doctor says he has liver damage and that the stomach will start to go down in the spring. The said that they do not know how much of the liver is damaged so he has to go in for a blood test every month. The first test I know one of the numbers was in the 400's and on the last test it was in the 200's. He has stopped drinking the day after he found out (one last binge). He also stopped smoking. His stomach has keep growing and is huge now. He finds it hard to walk anywhere and mostly just lies on the coach all day. He probably only eats about 500 calories a day and looks sick. He is kept up all night coughing and sleeps most of the day. I don't know what is causing his coughs. He has lots of nose bleeds as well. He goes for his next blood test in a couple of weeks. From what I know the numbers need to keep going down or stay the same for him to have a chance to live. My mom and I don't know what to do. He hids every symtom he can so it's hard to help him. I don't think the doctors know if he will make it or not. My mom and I feel like he's nearing the end and feel helpless. I don't know if his stomach is suppose to be getting bigger? I have read so articles on getting it drained or taking some medication but the doctor says no. I hope your father-in-law stops drinking but I know only they can do it so it's hard to watch. Jill
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • September 26, 2006
    • 07:39 PM
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  • My father is at home right now dying from this disease. His stomach started swelling about a year ago, maybe less and now he doesn't even know your there. I would like to talk to someone that has gone through the same thing. I feel like my dads time is limited and I need to understand more. I'm watching him suffer and its so hard to look at him like this. He has not been to any doctors because when he started getting sick he refused. Now I believe he is in the last stages and looking at him, he looks like he will pass away at anytime. He's in a lot of pain I think because he moans and yells out. I don't think he is even coherent, he falls all the time and he hasn't made speech in over a month.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • October 5, 2006
    • 00:09 PM
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  • My father is at home right now dying from this disease. His stomach started swelling about a year ago, maybe less and now he doesn't even know your there. I would like to talk to someone that has gone through the same thing. I feel like my dads time is limited and I need to understand more. I'm watching him suffer and its so hard to look at him like this. He has not been to any doctors because when he started getting sick he refused. Now I believe he is in the last stages and looking at him, he looks like he will pass away at anytime. He's in a lot of pain I think because he moans and yells out. I don't think he is even coherent, he falls all the time and he hasn't made speech in over a month.HiSo sorry to hear of your fathers condition, My husband also has advanced Cirrhosis but is doing fairly well right now.At one point he was getting so that he was very confused at times . one day while driving he didn't even know what street he was on even though we have to drive down that street every day to get home and have done that for 25 years. Well that night he was so sick that I finally talked him into going to the ER. They did some test and found out the alcahol level in his system was way too high which was causing his confusion. They started him on Lactulose which is a laxative that when taken regularly cleans the toxins from your body. Although he dosen't stray too far from where there is a restroom the Lactulose has kept his mind clear. He has also had a procedure called TIPS where they insert a shunt into the liver to take care of the excess fluid buildup as he had had up to seven liters of fluid drained from his stomach. This procedure has helped greatly. It has been 4 months since he had it done and it seems to be keeping the fluid off nicely. I Hope that this information helps you. GOOD LUCK
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • October 8, 2006
    • 11:37 AM
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  • My father is at home right now dying from this disease. His stomach started swelling about a year ago, maybe less and now he doesn't even know your there. I would like to talk to someone that has gone through the same thing. I feel like my dads time is limited and I need to understand more. I'm watching him suffer and its so hard to look at him like this. He has not been to any doctors because when he started getting sick he refused. Now I believe he is in the last stages and looking at him, he looks like he will pass away at anytime. He's in a lot of pain I think because he moans and yells out. I don't think he is even coherent, he falls all the time and he hasn't made speech in over a month.HiI wrote this morning regarding my husbands cirrhosis and may have left you pretty confused. If so I'm sorry. When I said that the cause of his confusion was the alcahol content in his system I should have said the ammonia content in his system was very high thats what causes his confusion and thats what the Lactulose is for.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • October 8, 2006
    • 07:37 PM
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  • My husband has serious cirrhosis and hep C. He has had 5 esophageal varice bleeds and is always extremely anemic because he loses so much blood when he bleeds. He is now having high ammonia levels with fluid in his stomach. He had a fetaprotein tumor marker test in the hospital last week and the normal numbers are 1-10, and his came back 46,000. He bleeds too much for a biopsy. He recently developed very severe left lower back pain and can barely stand and walk and I am wondering if anyone knows if liver cancer can cause that type of back pain? He definitely has not stained his back because he is unable to work. The doctors never say much and we never know what is coming next. Any info much appreciated. Thank you.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • October 31, 2006
    • 05:27 PM
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  • Hello Betty & Jame Amy -- I am 39 years old and I just found out today that my father is very sick. I knew he was sick for some time now, but I did not know the severity of it. My father is 65 years old, retired now for 12 years; did not have to work anymore after retirement. He has been drinking gin and tonic everyday-allday for the past 30 years. He finally went to the doctor's office this past Wednesday 11/15/06 at 6am, my older brother took him. I am currently in a different state, about 3.5 hours away. So far he has been diagnosed with Pancreattis (this is an enlargement of the pancreas, also causing lower back pain). Also has a Liver Disearse, not sure which one because the Liver has about 20+ kinds. The doctor did say that his Liver was gone, probably the only solution is a Liver Transplant. I am very hurt by this and I'm trying to be strong. It's hard, but my father is also stubborn and in denial. He did mention that he knows his body very well and he knows that he is sick, he just did not want to know how sick he was.The only thing I can say is that, to pray and hope for the best. Try to get those who need to go to the Doctors' office ASAP. That's all I can type for right now, I am about to cry and I'm trying not to.Thank you
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • November 16, 2006
    • 10:26 PM
    • 0
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  • my mother died of liver disease at age 44. She was in the hospital for 3 months (in intensive care on a ventilator) waiting for a transplant and died before she could get one. It is an ugly disease no matter why you get it. Hang in there guys.
    New MKE User 15 Replies
    • November 17, 2006
    • 08:39 PM
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  • Here's our story - hope it leaves you with hopeMy dad is 62 years old and diagnosed with end stage cirrhosis. the docs (a team of 6 MD's) told us that he had 6-12months to live back in june. he was a serious alcoholic for the last 10yrs. the last couple of years he would just pass out without warning (hepatic encephalapathy)... usually causing severe injury that required stitches. things progressed to the point that he could barely walk and was incontinent daily. he also lost ALL his muscle mass and looked anorexic but at the same time he looked 10months pregnant. the swelling in his stomach (ascites) had started to show about 2yrs before but we had no idea how bad it would get. he knew he was dying but refused to see a doctor. during that 2 year period he went through several stages of depression that really tore me apart. i lived about 300 miles away and he would call me all the time crying and telling me how sorry he was for all the terrible things he had done and for the things that he never did but should have. before that, i would not here from him for years unless i called. in June he was found in his house (he lived alone) by a neighbor that was worried. they called an ambulance and he was rushed to a hospital in Beaumont. they performed an emergency Paracentesis and removed over 13 liters of fluid from his stomach. they didn't expect him to live long enough to even leave the hospital. they did every test imaginable except a biopsy (because that would have killed him) and concluded that over 90% of his liver was gone. they told us there was nothing that could be done other than treat with meds. 5 weeks later he was released from the hospital, but they said that he would still die within 6-12months no matter what. he was put on lactulose, diuretics, and something else but i forget the name. the swelling (refractory ascites) returned almost immediately and he was not eating nor could he take care of himself. my wife and i convinced my dad to come live with us so we could take care of him. the first thing we did was buy him an electric hospital bed and a trapeze to help him get in and out of bed, which is where he spent 99% of his time. we did this because he was in terrible pain when he moved, to keep him from just giving up, to promote as much independence as possible, and to encourage ambulation. we also did some research and found a leading Gastroenterologist and made him an appointment. The doctors name is Dr. Thomas McHorse in Austin. After the first visit McHorse admitted my dad for another paracentesis, this was less than 2 months since the 13 liters were removed in Beaumont. this time 19 liters were removed. Dr. McHorse immediately took my dad off the lactalose, changed his diuretics, and began running more test - we had weekly dr visits. he stressed the importance of eating a salt free diet, absolutely no alchohol, and eating regular healthy meals. he also restricted fluid intake...etc,. after several weeks we could not believe how much he improved. Dr. McHorse has made several adjustments to his meds over the last few months, and eventually found the right combination that has completely eliminated his ascites (fluid in the stomach) for over two months now, he even has normal liver functioning (although the damage is permanent). when this all began, my dad weighed 180lbs and looked like a skeleton except for a huge belly. now he has no belly, weighs about 140lbs, and his muscle mass is starting to return. he still looks aweful for a man that usually weights 200lbs, but things are starting to return to normal. last month Dr. McHorse discovered that part of the problem with the passing out spells (syncope - related to Hepatic encephalapathy) was due to his hearts pacemaker. basically, the heart has 4 chambers, 2 upper atriums and 2 lower ventricles. the cycle is a little confusing but one side (right) receives blood from the body - then sends it to the lungs - the other side (left) receives it from the lungs - then sends it out to the body to resupply the organs and tissue with oxygen and nutrients. without going into more detail about that, i'll just say that his upper chambers (AV node) were not communicating with his lower chambers (SA node) that it was time to pump. so now he has a new pacemaker going on two weeks now. today is december the eight and yesterday, my dad drove over 4hrs away to visit family. he gets around now like he was never sick. his blood work is excellent and the doc says he could live another 10yrs or more.all i can say is - find a doc that will not give up... if my dad had kept his doctors in Beaumont he'd be dead now. and no matter what his doctor did or did not do, if he wasn't commited to following doctors orders, he'd be dead. it takes 3 things to survive - a good doctor, a committed patient, and family support. the bad news - it looks like my dad will be around for a long time... and i don't even like him! j/k
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • December 8, 2006
    • 09:17 PM
    • 0
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  • I found this board while searching for info on cirrhosis. My father is 55 and has been an alcoholic since about the age of 13. He has been showing symptoms of cirrhosis for about a year now, he's belly is very large, he has ulcers and extreme swelling in his legs, during a short time that he lived with me I noticed blood often on the toilet seat and in the sink as well as in the shower and on his bedroom walls-I'm assuming from his frequent nosebleeds. A couple days ago he asked me to bring him to the hospital saying that he may have pnemonia ( he still has not admitted that there is anything wrong with his liver) I went to visit him there today to find that he was on oxygen, his skin was very pale. I talked to his nurse who told me his white blood cell count was low and they would be draining the acetesis from his stomach to help him be comfortable, they will be running tests tommorrow but believe it may be something to do with his liver due to his history with alcohol. My father however told me that he was diagnosed with bronchitis and was fine, I think he's trying to protect me. I am sure I know what is wrong but I don't however know how advanced it is b/c his dr's are not authorized to discuss anything in detail with me, I want to know if this is the end or the beginning of the disease, I have already come to terms with the fact that he is going to die from this but would like to have an idea of how soon I should expect it. He is also having vision problems and been very forgetfull
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • December 18, 2006
    • 10:01 PM
    • 0
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  • I have cirrhosis, which was diagnosed about five years ago. At the time, I was placed in the CCU unit of the hospital, and my life expectancy was measured in days. My stomach was distended, my color was yellow and I had developed spiders. My weight was down. My blood work showed about a 70% + loss of liver function, which was confirmed by sonagrams, CAT scans and an MRI.I managed to get through three weeks of hospitalization . The doctors told me that, if I remained alcohol-free for six months, I could be placed on a liver transplant list. (That requirement has since changed; there is no six-month qualification period, unless imposed by a particular hospital.)That was basically a death sentence. Liver transplants are the exception, not the rule. There are not enough livers to go around. (The one-year survival rate after a transplant is good; the five-year survival rate is not so good.)For reasons I don't understand, my liver function returned to normal about one month after I got out of the hospital. The damage to the liver did not change - it never will. It's just that the small amount of liver that still functions is doing exceptionally good work. There's no telling how long that will last.Here's what I do. Number One: No drinking. That will kill me immediately. Number Two: Eat healthy. I don't worry too much about other food restrictions. I vary my diet and eat like a decent human. Number Three: Exercise to keep fit.The overriding thing I do is not to worry about it. I live my life. I have faith that things will be just fine, even if that means I must die from liver disease. Everyone dies; I just know what's going to kill me, absent some type of an act of God, like a plane crash or such.The list of things that can go wrong is lengthy. There is also a second list of other deadly conditions that might develop because the liver is damaged. Increased risk of liver cancer tops that list.But there is good news. If this problem acts up, I'm gone. No lingering, no burdening others, no prolonged suffering. Just a relatively quick and painless death. I think that's a good deal.In the meantime, I just keep living my life, enjoying the time I have left (as best I can) and trying each day to become a better person than the day before.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • December 30, 2006
    • 04:37 PM
    • 0
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  • After reading the board I felt compelled to write, for my husband has end stage liver failure and is praying for a transplant. He is 46 years old and has cirrhosis secondary to un-tested transfusions he received from bone marrow transplants in the early eighties, in which he contracted Hep C. Now after 21 years the Hep C has led to full blown cirrhosis. He is critically ill at this time, but he has a wonderful medical team which is trying to get him nationally listed for a transplant. Ascites is being controlled with lactulose, but the bilirubin continues to climb and he is jaundiced to the point of orange-yellow.I read looking for hope and maybe help, but yet again it seems hopeless with the exception of the father who went OFF lactulose and on a salt free diet....any thoughts please.Kim
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • January 4, 2007
    • 11:33 AM
    • 0
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  • HelloMy husband is 50 years old and was diagnosed with cirrhosis about 3 years ago. He, like everyone else, is in denial. He continues to drink even though the doctors have told him if he continues he only has a year or so left. He has been unable to work for the past 2 1/2 years and has now begun to complain of back/leg pain just as Betty's husband had. He is fairly secretive about his symptoms so I never know what to do. He has had periodic bouts of incontinence and loss of memory. He had been drinking vodka for a while last year and during that time had daily bleeding from his nose and mouth. I believe he is currently drinking beer and the bleeding has stopped. His platelet count is low and he complains daily of feeling cold although he's dressed warmly. He hasn't experienced ascites yet. He does have jaundiced eyes and spider veins on his nose. It is very hard to watch someone you love struggle with this disease. You try to help them, but until they are ready and that day may never come there is nothing you can do. Good luck to everyone out there.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • January 18, 2007
    • 02:56 AM
    • 0
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  • wow - there is sooo many of us going through exactly the same thing. It's amazing to me to read how all of you know about ascites, the spider veins, the swelling, the confusion, etc. My dad was diagnosed with cirrhosis almost 4 years ago - and I know now that he had it even earlier than that. It started about 7 years ago with having too much iron in his blood and having to go for labotomies (the removal of blood from the body.) That was the liver starting to tell us something was wrong. The liver is supposed to remove the excess iron (considered a toxin). My dad, only 64, looks about 85 goes every 12-14 days to have the abdominal fluid drained. They take 10 liters each time. It's amazing how in 2 days he gains 5 lbs. right back and then another 1 or 2 a day until he can't take it anymore. He had a heart attack back in September so the fluid retention is really ******n the heart. Years of drinking . . . I asked him the other day if he knew what it would do to him would he have stopped. He said, "Yes" - not sure I believe him. It's a slow depressing death. I'm the main caretaker (he's divorced); my sister's in another state (CT) and my brother just seems uninterested. He lives by himself so that's a bit unnerving for me at times, but I did get him an emergency alert system. How the heart beats when the phone rings late at night. It saved him once already. My question, if anybody knows, how long can this fluid retention go on? I mean can the body really take this procedure once a week. And if the fluid is infected; is that the end? I've been trying to prepare myself for a while now . . . I don't want to see him suffer.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • January 22, 2007
    • 07:55 PM
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  • I don't know if this helps but my mom 64 who never drank, or smoked has cirrhosis of the liver for unknown reasons. It is severe enough that the liver specialist did not want to do a biopsy. We wanted to get on a transplant list but ofcourse insurance only covers 100,000 and yes we need much more.After bringing her to live with me I took her to a doctor/chiropractor/DO to help with back pain. Well he has saved her life at least for now. She was on 5 medications, Lacex-water pills aldactone, and several others because of the edema in her legs. She was about 191 and only 5ft 2 inches. She was bound to a walker quickly, rash, fluid in legs and belly, jaundice. He began by running labs and no they did not look good which ofcourse we knew after seeing all the doctors. We immediately began a restricted diet (low sodium), eating properly and a list of needed vitamins and minerals. Once a week they would also massage all the fluid out of her legs. Within 4 months not only does she need no medication for fluid retention or anything else but all of her labs but 2 or 3 things are normal. Her weight is 129 and holding and she is walking again on her own pretty well actually. We take b23 and folic acid shots as well. Yes I am sure she still has the disease but we have bought some time and quality of life. Oh yeah 1 hour of sun a day too. Her jaundice is greatly reducedHer stomach sticks out as well but that is from a hernia which is common. Not a big deal but when one is sick they don't like to risk it by surgery.I have another family member (2nd cousin) who was on a transplant list (alcoholism) and passed away before getting his transplant. There is supposedly a 6 month waiting period because of that and you must go to alcohol counseling but saw on the news last night some politician got one in 16 days. I wonder if I could have bought my other family member some time if I had been able to get him at least the nutritional treatment my mom got? They say that the liver can regenerate itself to some extent.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • January 25, 2007
    • 03:56 AM
    • 0
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  • My mom 64 also has severe liver cirrhosis. Insurance won't pay enough for the transplant so after a couple of specialist I went another route. She was full of fluid, lacex and couldn't walk. Aged alot. After four months of diet change, lower sodium, vitamins, minerals, b12 and folic acid shots, massaging of her legs once a week to get toxins out, sun exposure for jaundice, she is off all meds and retaining no extra fluid. I have had the labs rerun and they speak for themselves. Ofcourse her billy rubin is still a little high and yes she still has the disease but just these things have improved her a lot. She walks on her own again and is much less jaundice. There is no need for the lacex.I hope this helps.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • January 25, 2007
    • 04:04 AM
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  • My mother, age 61, is going through just about the same things right now. She has been a heavy drinker for 40 years, she likes bourbon and water. For the past year she has been in and out of hospitals and nursing homes. She was on a Ventilator a year ago for 10 days and pulled through. Everytime she is released from the Hospital she would return home and go straight back to drinking. She lives alone, which is not good, but that is how she wants to live. A couple weeks ago I called 911 from her house because she hadn't eaten in days and was very dehydrated, and yes she was drinking alcohol at that time. Sh went into Cardiac Arrest in the Ambulance and they brought her back. She is now in a Nursing Home, because of insurance company policies with the hospital, and not doing very well at all. She has severe ascites in her stomach, and her legs and feet are really swollen. Her kidneys are only producing at 50%. She is very lathargic and sleeps alot. We know she is in the final stages of cirrohsis, but no one knows when her time will run out except God.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • January 25, 2007
    • 04:23 PM
    • 0
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  • I'm Sorry To Hear About Your Father. My Dad Is Also Dying Of Cirrhosis. Your Dad Needs To Go To A Doctor And Get Some Lactulose!!!!!! His Brain Can Not Function Cause Of All The Ammonia Is Building Up. The Lactulose Will Remove The Ammonia From His System. The Reason That He Is Not Responding To You Is Because All The Ammonia. And If He Does Not Get Any Lactulose Soon He Will Lapse Into A Comma. Please Get Him To A Doctor!!!! Thanks & God Bless
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • February 5, 2007
    • 07:01 PM
    • 0
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  • A high dosage of Vitamin C have saved people with liver failure. It can be given intravenously too up to 10,000 mg.At home, one can take it orally up to "bowel tolerance"- which means you have to find out how much you can take before it gives you diarrhea. There is also great liver detox substances and cell detox products.Beyondhealth.com sales the best supplements, the author actually had liver failure and he was to died with a few days. Instead of dying, he took Vitamin C- so you guys can ask him what's the maxium safe quantity he took.The name of this person is Raymond Francis.I hope this info helps, since I had a liver problem and I was given weird cirrhosis diagnosis because of how bad my liver was (it was wrong). No one did anything for my liver, but I figured it out myself.*Vitamin C*Sylmarin.* Mega multivitamins and minerals*Antioxidants.Go to this site and get the multivitamin, the cell detox, the vitamin C, and the hepatoprotectant (LIVA guard). Or get supplements with the same ingredients.*Quercitin is very important.*Lots of water.Best.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • February 5, 2007
    • 07:24 PM
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  • hmm..well at least ur dad is old..im 18 and have end stage of liver cirrosis(disease) and not due to alcohol...but anyways..i can relate to anyone goin through "this" too i guess. but i dont think of it as a big deal, i don't think. oh well..life is good
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • February 8, 2007
    • 04:33 AM
    • 0
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  • Today is 2/08/07 and I'm seeking information concerning my 44 year old brother who has cirrhosis,50% functioning, and hepatitis C. He is confused do to the bill up of ammounia in his liver. He's in hospitol at the moment also with heart problems, fluid retention in his arms and legs weighing in at 347 lbs. He is being treating with lactulose and is also jauntice. All we've been told is he is in liver failure with very little medical information from the doctors. He looks like he's at the end of his life waiting on a death wish. Back in Nov. of 06, his prognosis is maybe 5 yrs. My question is realistically, I wish I knew how much longer he really has,. He doestn't look good and keeps being rushed to ICU everyother day.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • February 8, 2007
    • 11:52 PM
    • 0
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