Damage to intricate architecture of liver caused by alcohol, malnutrition, Hepatitis, Heart Failure, and certain drugs and toxins, magnesium deficiency may also be a factor. Damaged tissue is replaced by hard lumps of scar tissue, yellowish (cirrhos means tawny) in appearance, which cut off hard-working liver cells from the vessels and ducts which enable them to function. As liver function deteriorates, there is Weight Loss, loss of appetite, Nausea and Vomiting, Indigestion, general weakness, and a tendency to bleed and bruise easily; in later stages, Jaundice develops and periods cease (see Menstrual Problems), followed by fluid retention (oedema) and liver failure. Sufferers are always advised to stop drinking alcohol, and to cut down intake of salt and fat; diuretics, steroids, cytotoxic drugs, and vitamin and mineral supplements may also be prescribed.
A number of specific homeopathic remedies are given below, but sufferers are advised to seek the care of an experienced homeopath.
Specific remedies to be taken 4 times daily for up to 7 days while seeking homeopathic treatment
- Jaundice, empty or gnawing sensation in pit of stomach, craving for ice-cold water, which makes sensation worse and which is vomited up as soon as it becomes warm in stomach, tendency to bleed easily Phosphorus 30c
- Liver swollen, with pain under right ribs, pain aggravated by slightest touch, person chilly and sensitive to draughts, stomach full of wind but not relieved by belching China 30c
- Fluid retention, especially around ankles and abdomen, person feels worn out, chilly, restless, and markedly worse between midnight and 2 am Arsenicum 30c
Self-help: Cut out alcohol (fatal liver failure is almost inevitable if the liver is given no respite from alcohol), and cut down on salt and fat. Stop taking any non-prescription drugs. Extra Vitamin A, zinc, magnesium, nickel, and selenium are recommended.