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Liver Disease Notes

Medicine Notes > Gastrointestinal Disease Notes

This is an extract of our Liver Disease document, which we sell as part of our Gastrointestinal Disease Notes collection written by the top tier of University Of Leicester students.

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Liver Disease Jaundice (icterus)

Yellow pigmentation of skin, sclerae and mucosae due to increase plasma bilirubin (>35umol/L) Bilirubin metabolism Haemoglobin Globin Fe2+

Haem Unconjugated bilirubin

Bilirubin + glucuronic acid (glucuronyl transferase)

= Conjugated bilirubin (water soluble) Into gut via bile

Gut bacteria



Sterobilin Excreted in urine (brown wee)
= Brown poo Classification Pre-hepatic jaundice:
- Increased bilirubin production Increased unconjugated bilirubin
- Decreased liver uptake in blood (normal colour urine)
- Decreased conjugation
- Some causes are o Physiological neonatal jaundice o Haemolysis o Glucuronyl transferase deficiency Hepatocellular jaundice
- Result of hepatocyte damage
- Usually some cholestasis (therefore mixed picture of unconjugated and conjugated bilirubin but as disease progresses more cholestatic - obstructive jaundice occurs)


Two main causes are viral hepatitis and alcohol Other causes = drugs, cirrhosis, autoimmune hepatitis

Post-hepatic jaundice
- Obstruction (e.g common bile duct) causes increased conjugated bilirubin in blood
- Is water-soluble so urine = dark
- Less conjugated bilirubin enters the bowel - faeces = pale
- Causes =
o Gallstones o Pancreatic cancer o PSC (primary sclerosing choleangitis) o PBC (primary biliary cirrhosis)

Viral hepatitis Hepatitis ARNA virus Faecal-oral spread Mostly self-limiting acute hepatitis of childhood No chronic liver disease Immunisation available

Hepatitis BDNA virus Spread through blood products, IV durg abuse, sexual intercourse and direct contact + vertical transmission Causes acute hepatitis Increased risk of hepatocellular carcinoma Immunisation available

Hepatitis CRNA virus Spread through blood products, IV drug abuse + sexual intercourse Mild illness 85% progress to chronic liver disease

Hepatitis DIncomplete RNA virus Exists only with Hep. B Increased risk in IV drug abusers Increased risk of acute hepatic failure and cirrhosis

Hepatitis ERNA virus

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