HOW DOES THE DISEASE EVOLVE?
From the infection, the progress of the virus within the organism is generally slow and takes place over several years, even decades. The average time between the infection and cirrhosis (the stage where the liver damage is already permanent) varies between 20 and 30 years. Each case´s progress is quite specific in itself; there is no absolutely certain time. The stages of the liver are measure like this:
F1 Initial Fibrosis
F2 Intermediate Fibrosis
F3 Extensive fibrosis
WHAT IS A HEPATIC FIBROSIS?
The liver, with the continuous attack of the virus will become “flaky “. However, it is an organ capable of regenerating itself and going back to its original state.
After each episode of attacks on the liver, it reaches a crucial stage. This is the result of scarring, and the scar tissue of the liver eventually reaches such a stage that it cannot compensate for the deterioration of the organ , so the liver can no longer regenerate itself.
I HAVE CIRRHOSIS, AND NOW?
Cirrhosis is not a death sentence. Many people usually live for years, for decades, for the rest of their entire lives with what is called “Compensated cirrhosis.”
Cirrhosis has stages. It can be initially compensated, where the liver does most of its functions normally – a stage called Child A.
THE DECOMPENSATION OF CIRRHOSIS
The liver, when in the advanced stages of cirrhosis, starts getting softer and can no longer produce many substances that are essential for digestion and blood filtration.
SYMPTOMS OF LIVER DECOMPENSATION ITS AND COMPLICATIONS
The first symptoms to usually appear are:
1 – Red blotches on the hands, feet and legs;
2 – Yellowish eyes.
MORE AVANCED SYMPTOMS:
1 – Ascites (concentration of fluid in the abdomen);
2 – Jaundice (yellow skin and eyes);
3 – Confusion (encephalopathy).
When these symptoms are present, the case is severe and often requires liver transplantation.