Liver cirrhosis is a common chronic liver disease. Some patients with cirrhosis of the liver, at a certain period of time, will have a bloated stomach and become more and more serious, people do not put on weight, but the stomach gets bigger and bigger.
Many people also know that this is ascites, which indicates that the disease is serious.

1.What causes ascites?

Ascites, is said to be an abnormal increase in the amount of water accidentally in the abdominal cavity from the internal organs. Originally, there was a small amount of water in the abdominal cavity that served as a lubricant.
This water is not stagnant, but is constantly exchanged with the water in the blood to maintain a dynamic balance. When this balance is broken, the water in the abdominal cavity continues to increase beyond the normal amount, and ascites is formed.

Liver cirrhosis is the most common cause of ascites. Patients with cirrhosis of the liver who develop ascites usually indicate that the liver is having a hard time functioning to keep the body running.
The liver has the well-known function of “detoxification”. Most of the blood from the stomach, intestines, spleen, and other organs is collected in the portal vein as it returns to the heart, and then flows from the portal vein through the liver, where it completes the metabolism of all kinds of substances before returning to the heart.
When cirrhosis occurs, the liver hardens, the resistance to blood flow in the portal vein becomes greater, and the more blood accumulates in the portal vein, the more it is forced to dilate.
The more pressure is put on the portal vein, the thinner the walls of the vein become like a balloon, and the water in the blood can easily leak through these gaps into the abdominal cavity to form ascites, and even some substances such as proteins and bacteria in the intestines can leak into the abdominal cavity along with the water.
In addition to the exchange of substances, the liver can also synthesize albumin in the blood, when the liver function is weakened, the albumin in the blood is also less, like we make powdered milk, powdered milk put less, the glass of milk will become light. After the blood becomes light, the water in the blood will go to relatively thick places, such as the abdominal cavity.

2.How should hepatic ascites be treated?

(1)Bed rest

Bed rest can increase blood flow to the liver, which is conducive to the absorption and subsidence of ascites, as well as the recovery of heart and kidney functions.

(2)Dietary treatment

Provide rich nutrition to ensure sufficient energy supply. Give vitamin-rich and easily digestible food, strictly prohibit alcohol, moderately increase the intake of vegetables and fruits, and eat lean meat, fish, milk and other high-quality proteins, but patients with concurrent hepatic encephalopathy need to reduce the amount or even fasting, and patients with concurrent esophageal varices should be prohibited from eating hard and coarse food.

(3)Limit water and salt

The more salt you eat, the more water will be held by the salt in the blood vessels, and this water will also enter the abdominal cavity, leading to aggravation of ascites.
Therefore, patients with ascites should generally limit the intake of water and sodium salt, salt is generally less than 2g per day.


Apply diuretics to expel water from the body, and the effect can be observed by monitoring body weight. Weight loss should be limited to about 0.5 kg per day for patients without edema and about 1 kg per day for patients with edema.

(5)Laparoscopic drainage

The amount of ascites released every day should also be controlled, in order to avoid a large amount of ascites release caused by heart failure, sometimes after the release of ascites will also let the patient tie the abdominal band, to maintain a certain abdominal cavity pressure, to ensure that enough blood into the liver and heart.

3.How can ascites be prevented?

The most important thing for people with liver disease to prevent cirrhosis and ascites is prevention.

(1)Avoid overexertion

Proper exercise can keep you healthy, but overexertion is very bad for your body. People with liver disease should avoid heavy work.

(2)Avoid alcohol

The liver is an important organ for metabolizing alcohol, which means that alcohol causes a lot of damage to the liver.

(3)Early treatment of liver disease

In general, the main cause of cirrhosis is chronic hepatitis B cirrhosis. Many patients are in the early stage of hepatitis B, not standardized antiviral treatment, resulting in liver function deterioration, and eventually developed into cirrhosis.
Patients with chronic hepatitis B, when the viral index has reached the standard of antiviral treatment, must be early for standardized treatment to prevent cirrhosis.

(4)Don’t abuse liver prescriptions

As we all know, the liver has the role of detoxification, the effectiveness of these unknown prescriptions, hepatoprotective drugs, will also be metabolized by the liver, can also increase the burden on the liver, but instead of worsening liver function.
In the regular antiviral treatment, but also constantly monitor liver function, in order to prevent liver damage caused by drugs, those of unknown origin, the role of liver preservation of unknown recipes, or not to touch the best.

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