Symposium by Apollo Hospitals and Mount Sinai Hospitals calls for awareness on liver diseases
• One in every 5 Indians suffer from Liver Disease
• 30 percent of Indians suffer fatty liver and quarter of this develop liver Cirrhosis and Liver failure
• Hepatitis B is prevalent among 45 million and Hepatitis C in 15 Million people in India
Chennai , 24th March 2017 : Liver Disease is one of the major concerns in India, with liver cancer being the second most common cause of cancer deaths globally and third common cancer related death in India. Around 2.5 lakh people die every year due to liver failure caused due to alcohol consumption, fatty liver, viral infections like Hepatitis B, C and genetic disorder. While majority of liver failure cases can be rectified through transplants, many cases fail due to lack of awareness and negligence in the initial stages.
In this scenario Apollo Hospitals in collaboration with Mount Sinai Hospitals held a symposium to share knowledge on liver diseases and transplants. The session threw light on alcohol related liver diseases , fatty liver disease, Hepatitis B and C and also shared information on liver failure and liver transplantation. In particular there was knowledge sharing of such treatments in India and Tamil Nadu and compared to the scenario in US where the costs are considerably higher.
“When we hear the word organ failure, most of us tend to perceive it to be Kidney or lung failure but it is to be noted that liver is also an organ that has the possibility of undergoing organ failure. A lot of people lack awareness when it comes to liver failure and this sheer negligence leads to more complications,” says Dr N Murugan, Hepatologist, Apollo Hospitals.
Most of the liver diseases have similar symptoms but may have slight variations depending on the cause of the disease. Loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting of blood, jaundice , abdominal pain , swelling of limbs are all indications of liver disease and but many times occurs late after development of cirrhosis of liver. “Liver disease if diagnosed at the initial stages can be managed through medicines. Early diagnosis is very important to avoid complications. Advanced tests such as Fibroscan done for fatty liver and hepatitis B and C and steps to control alcohol will be useful” said Dr KR Palanisamy, Sr Consultant, Institute of Gastrosciences, Apollo hospitals.
Speaking on liver transplants in India, Dr. N Murugan also said “ Liver transplants can be done from both living donor and a cadaver donor. The survival rate of is over 90% and the liver gets back to normalcy within 6-8 weeks after surgery. Living donors are preferred in case of emergencies thus avoiding the waiting time during which many complications may arise. Cadaver transplants should be encouraged more and Tamil Nadu is the leader in this aspect, but there is still a huge demand and supply gap for such organs.
Liver diseases can be prevented in most cases, whether it is alcohol induced liver complications, fatty liver disease , Hepatitis B or C. Increased awareness, early diagnosis and early referral to specialists in liver diseases are the key for this to succeed.