I wish I would have known more about liver health before I was diagnosed with Budd Chiari Syndrome. Trying to play catch up after a liver disease diagnosis isn’t easy but it’s not impossible. So while I am waiting for my new liver, I try to do all that I can to keep my current liver as healthy as possible.
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Our liver might not be the hardest working organ in our bodies but it is the busiest. It has over 500 tasks to manage daily. Always working — filtering, metabolizing, absorbing, storing and producing. All. Day. Long. It is overworked and underappreciated. But it is also the most forgiving organ. Did you know your liver is also the only organ that can actually regenerate and repair damage if it is caught early enough?
One of the first and most obvious things the doctors told me was to stop drinking. The thing about liver disease is that people are just going to assume that it was caused by excessive drinking. And while that is the case sometimes, it isn’t always. My liver damage was caused by blood clots forming thanks to a hereditary blood disorder. Not alcohol.
When we drink, our livers do their best to keep up, but they can only work so fast. The more a person drinks, the harder their liver will have to work. And when it can no longer filter the alcohol, you’ll become intoxicated and put yourself at risk for liver damage. Drinking should always be done responsibly.
When I was listed on the transplant list my doctors reminded me again that I was no longer allowed to drink and that doing so would jeopardize my chances of a transplant. Some hospitals require patients with alcohol related illnesses to be sober for a set amount of time before being evaluated for transplant.