By Dr. Tanmaya Acharya, Ayurveda
Cirrhosis of the liver is a chronic and progressive condition in which the liver gets damaged and healthy liver tissue is replaced with scar tissue, ultimately causing dysfunction of the liver. Liver damage obstructs the circulation to the liver and also hinders the processing of nutrients, hormones, drugs, toxins as well as the production of proteins and other substances made by the liver. Liver cirrhosis is caused due to hepatitis C, fatty liver, alcohol abuse, viral infections, inherited diseases, and as a toxic reaction to drugs and environmental waste products. The modern management of this condition involves diet modification, reduction in salt intake, total abstinence from alcohol, and avoiding all the causative factors of this condition.
Cirrhosis of liver causes multiple symptoms in the body including fluid collection in the abdomen, bleeding varices in the stomach, chronic heart failure, damage to the central nervous system, and various metabolic disorders in the body. Advanced cirrhosis of liver is ultimately fatal.
- It is therefore of prime importance to commence treatment at the earliest possible. It is of utmost importance to treat the known cause of the condition. Ayurvedic herbal medicines have a definite action on the hepatic cells and can effectively treat inflammation within the liver. Ayurvedic medicines can also treat infection as well as metabolic dysfunction of the liver, and protect it from the toxic effects of drugs and environmental wastes. Ayurvedic medicines can therefore be effectively used to treat all the known causes of liver cirrhosis.
- Liver damage causes healthy cells to be replaced with scar tissue. This is preceded by a process of inflammation, swelling and gradual death of the liver cells. Early institution of Ayurvedic treatment can help dramatically reduce inflammation and swelling and thereby preserve the liver cells and prevent unnecessary damage. Even in the early phase of scar deposition. Ayurvedic herbal medicines can help remove scar tissue, minimize permanent liver damage, and help regenerate damaged or near-dead cells Ayurvedic herbal medicines therefore form a comprehensive treatment therapy for liver cirrhosis.
- The other symptoms resulting from liver cirrhosis such as ascites, esophageal varices, congestive cardiac failure and metabolic disorders start improving automatically when the obstruction in the liver is treated and removed. However, Ayurvedic medicines can treat these symptoms independently too, if these are observed to be severe in the affected individual and require urgent medical care. Improved functioning of the liver also helps to improve the overall metabolism and nutrition of the body and metabolize toxic substances within the body. Prompt and aggressive Ayurvedic treatment, therefore, helps comprehensively treat liver cirrhosis and significantly reduce morbidity and mortality resulting from this disease.
- Cirrhosis can also adversely affect the central nervous system and cause psychotic symptoms and permanent nerve damage. Prompt treatment with Ayurvedic herbal medicines also helps to preserve the brain function and treat the associated symptoms.
- Depending upon the severity of the condition, most individuals affected with cirrhosis require regular and aggressive Ayurvedic herbal treatment for periods ranging from six to eighteen months, in order to obtain significant benefit and a possible complete cure from the condition. Ayurvedic treatment thus has a definite role to play in the management and treatment of cirrhosis.