Major Spencer
Cirrhosis can result from many types of chronic liver injury. Dr. Malone, can you tell us about some of the causes of cirrhosis?

Dr. Malone
Of course, Major Spencer. Injury to the liver leads to inflammation, which causes scar tissue to develop in the liver over time. This process is called fibrosis. Mild to moderate stage fibrosis usually doesn't cause symptoms, but as the amount of fibrosis increases, the normal shape and function of the liver is disrupted. The result is cirrhosis.

In the United States, excess alcohol use and chronic hepatitis infections are the most common causes of liver injury resulting in cirrhosis. Other conditions that can lead to cirrhosis include:

  • Fatty liver disease
  • Inherited disorders
  • Medication-induced liver injury
  • Bile duct disorders, and
  • Autoimmune diseases

Some patients have no identifiable cause for cirrhosis. This is known as cryptogenic cirrhosis.