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Autoimmune Hepatitis

Autoimmune hepatitis is a condition that may lead to elevated liver enzymes in the affected patient. In this disease, the person's liver is attacked by his immune system. This is why the condition is termed as autoimmune.

Symptoms

The particular symptoms that show up in a person with autoimmune hepatitis may vary. Jaundice is one possibility. Itching may also take place. The patient's urine and stools both have the possibility of being discolored -- the former may be darker than normal while the latter may be lighter than they used to be. The patient's joints might be affected by pain. Rashes can also appear on the skin. Nausea may result and vomiting is also a possibility. However, these do not make up a complete list of possible symptoms. Also, they can certainly show up for reasons other than autoimmune hepatitis.

Diagnosis

This site does not give you a list of symptoms in order to let you try to make a diagnosis of autoimmune hepatitis on your own. If this is what you are looking for, then you should see a doctor. Certain tests may be done in order to check the patient. One of these is a liver function test. Autoantibodies might also need to be checked through a blood test. Additionally, in some cases a small section of tissue from the liver is taken using a surgical procedure known as a biopsy.



Treatment

First of all, the diagnosis needs to be made, so that the wrong treatment is not given. There are two kinds of autoimmune hepatitis, but as of the time of this writing, both were usually treated using the same general method. However, within the area of this method, there are various ways in which it can be administered. The amount of medication, for instance, can vary. There is also a second medicine that is used in some cases, which can allow for lesser amounts of the first to be used. For specifics and a prescription of how to go about this in a particular case, please talk with a doctor.

Complications

It is possible for complications to arise in a person with autoimmune hepatitis. One of these is cirrhosis. Should that happen, then treatment may be modified. Cirrhosis also has its own set of symptoms, and therefore ones specifically related to it may show up in the patient.

Read further about elevated liver enzymes causes, or go right to the front page to find information on different aspects such as symptoms and more.

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