Organ Damage From Alcohol Use And Abuse

Organ Damage From Alcohol Use And Abuse

Alcohol abuse is in the top three among all possible risk factors for premature death disability and loss of health in the world. Many economic and social problems are associated with it for example it is the excessive consumption of alcohol that is becoming one of the most frequent causes of divorce in United States.

Alcohol is a toxic substance that causes damage to most organs and provokes more than 60 different disorders.

Abuse is a risk factor for the development of steatosis  liver cirrhosis various types of cancer diabetes mellitus neuropsychiatric disorders   reproductive disorders   as well as infectious diseases such as HIV tuberculosis pneumonia and sexually transmitted diseases . Unfavorable social and living conditions in which a patient with alcoholism is, and the damage to the immune system caused by alcohol increases the likelihood of developing infections.

Alcohol affects various organs acting in three main directions: it causes intoxication (intoxication) provokes the development of addiction and has a direct toxic effect.

Intoxication is an acute state of intoxication that appears after excessive drinking for a relatively short time. It is intoxication that is responsible for most cases of violence injury and accidents caused by alcohol consumption.

Addiction is formed due to the psychoactive properties of alcohol. It causes various changes at the level of neurochemical reactions due to which the patient ceases to control the amount and frequency of alcohol consumption despite obvious changes in health and social status.

The toxicity of alcohol causes the development of cardiomyopathies 8  oncological diseases of 9 different organs as well as liver damage. Therefore after giving up alcohol a person faces the problem of restoring the body as a whole and the liver in particular.


Chronic damage to liver tissue caused by the systematic use of alcohol is called alcoholic liver disease. It develops in several stages:

ALCOHOLIC FATTY LIVER DISEASE (ABP / AFLD OR STEATOSIS) – excessive accumulation of fatty droplets in the liver tissue.

HEPATITIS (STEATOHEPATITIS) – development of the inflammatory process against the background of fatty liver infiltration.

FIBROSIS – necrosis (death) of hepatocytes and their replacement by connective tissue.

CIRRHOSIS – further progression of fibrosis with a change in the structure of the liver and significant violations of its function. It develops in 20 years in 22% of patients with ABD .

The rate and extent of liver damage are influenced by the amount of alcohol consumed and the duration of abuse (women are more susceptible to toxic effects ) ethnicity and comorbidities. In the early stages of liver damage obvious signs are usually absent and only in blood tests can an increase in the level of liver enzymes be detected  and ultrasound can reveal signs of liver steatosis. As the disease progresses and organ function decompensation is achieved signs of liver damage may appear: jaundice a tendency to bleeding edema enlargement of the saphenous veins of the abdomen etc.


At the stage of steatosis liver damage is usually diagnosed by chance by conducting research for some other reason . And this can be considered a fortunate coincidence because at the stage of steatosis the liver can be completely returned to normal. In fact for this it is enough to completely abandon alcohol eat adequately and maintain the required level of physical activity and the body will take care of the rest since the liver has a high ability to regenerate. Drug therapy can also be used to speed up the recovery process.

In the later stages the process of liver damage cannot always be completely reversed but avoiding alcohol adherence to the regimen and adherence to therapy help to improve the condition of the organ.


First of all you must completely abandon alcohol. Even reducing the amount of alcohol and the frequency of its use will be beneficial.


The patient’s diet should be balanced and varied. This will help to provide the body with macro- and microelements the deficiency of which is characteristic of chronic alcohol abuse. The calorie content of the diet on average should be at least 2000 kcal per day (accurately calculated depending on gender age and physical activity). The diet should contain at least 1.5 g of protein per kilogram of the patient’s body weight per day .


Since chronic alcoholism is often accompanied by a deficiency of vitamins in the body the doctor may prescribe vitamin and mineral complexes especially B 11 vitamins. For severe alcoholic steatohepatitis glucocorticoids may be recommended. Essential phospholipids can be used to treat alcoholic liver disease and accelerate its recovery . They help to stabilize the cell membranes of hepatocytes protect liver cells from oxidative stress and help prevent fibrosis. Essential phospholipid-based drugs have a favorable safety profile and improve liver health in alcoholic liver disease.

In severe alcoholic liver disease organ transplantation is indicated but in practice the availability of this method is very limited.

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