Liver Disease And Itching In The Skin
Cure Liver Disease and Itching in the Skin through Ayurveda!!
Experiencing skin itching lately? Previously diagnosed with liver issues? Itchy skin (pruritus) can sometimes be a sign of a more serious ailment, such as liver disease. However, itching is not common in people with liver illness, and its exact causes remain unknown. The causes of itching in patients with liver disease are discussed in this article. We’ll also go over how to cure it via Ayurveda, as well as other possible reasons for itchiness.
Factors causing Pruritus in Liver disease!
Pruritus is uncommon in both alcoholic and nonalcoholic fatty liver disorders. It’s most frequently linked to Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis (PSC), Primary Biliary Cirrhosis (PBC), and Pregnancy-related intrahepatic cholestasis, Scientists have conducted several experimental and clinical research, but they have yet to find a single chemical that causes itching in people with liver disease. It’s possible that a mix of variables is to blame.
Higher quantities of bile salt may accumulate under the skin in those with liver illness, causing itching. Not everyone with high bile salt levels is itchy, and some people are itchy even though their bile salt levels are normal. Pruritus causes histamine levels to rise in some persons. Itching might be exacerbated by pregnancy or hormone replacement therapy. ALP levels may also be raised in those with the itch from liver illness.
Frequency of Occurrence
The liver is the biggest organ in the body. It digests fats, cleanses the body, manufactures cholesterol and proteins, and stores vitamins. Healthcare workers frequently connect itching with chronic liver illness, particularly cholestatic liver diseases like Primary Biliary Cholangitis (PBC) and primary sclerosing cholangitis, according to a study (PSC). The soles of the feet and the palms of the hands are the most common areas where itching develops.
According to a study, 70 percent of people with PBC have pruritus. Pruritus is a sign of PSC, but most persons are asymptomatic at the time of diagnosis. As a result, no one knows how common this condition is. Despite the fact that pruritus can occur in persons with different types of liver illness, it does not appear to be a prevalent symptom. The link between itch and systemic disorders is still poorly understood.
Itching as a symptom of Liver illness
The itching that comes with liver illness is stronger in the late evening and at night. Some people experience pruritus in a single area, such as a limb, the palms of their hands, or the soles of their feet, while others experience it all over their bodies. Itching induced by liver illness is oftentimes accompanied by no rash or skin sores. Excessive scratching, on the other hand, can cause obvious irritation, redness, and infection.
The following factors can aggravate the problem: menstruation, pregnancy, hormone replacement treatment, stress, and exposure to heat. If you have liver disease, make an appointment with your doctor if you notice any new or worsening symptoms. Itching is included in this. While it’s possible that it has no bearing on disease progression or prognosis, you won’t know for sure without a complete evaluation.
Hepatotropic viral infections and the skin as a ‘gateway’
There is no denying that the skin and the liver have a complex biochemical relationship. To begin with, the integument might be thought of as a “gate” through which hepatotropic viruses can enter the bloodstream. In this regard, consider the vast number of B and C virus hepatites that must have been acquired in the distant past as a result of intravenous drug use, contaminated equipment used in beauty and healthcare treatments, or even dermal tattooing. Furthermore, several cases of herpes simplex virus hepatitis have been recorded in the literature, which is not ruled out as a result of systemic spread from primary mucocutaneous lesional foci.
However, the skin can also be considered as a ‘mirror,’ capable of projecting more or less particular echoes of disease states involving the liver onto the bodily surface. Herpesviruses such as Herpes Simplex Viruses (HSV) type 1 or 2 and Varicella-Zoster virus (VZV) create latency by remaining dormant in the dorsal root nerve ganglia after initial infection in the absence of any severe immune deficiency situation. Reactivation of the virus causes cutaneous or mucocutaneous signs that normally run a benign course, with an inflammatory vesicular and/or a bullous rash that is usually limited to a small area of the body surface. Herpetic lesions heal within a few weeks, with no or minor scarring and dyschromic sequelae, despite the fact that some individuals have quite outstanding clinical scenarios.
Ayurveda has a long history of successfully treating liver problems, and drug toxicity appears to be lower than in conventional treatment. Physicians are hesitant to administer modern medicine for long-term usage since current medical remedies for liver problems have more systemic harm. The usefulness of various therapeutic plants and herbs-mineral compounds reported in Ayurveda in the treatment of liver illness has been proven in clinical and animal research in this century. This may be one of the reasons why patients with chronic liver disease seek primary or adjunctive herbal treatment, which is a common occurrence seen all over the world.
Kumari (Aloe vera), Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), Guggul (Commiphora mukul), Turmeric (Curcuma longa), Bakuchi (Psoralea corylifolia), Senna (Cassia senna), Noni (Morinda citrifolia), Malabar tamarind (Garcinia cambogia), and Gurmar (Gymnema sylvestre) have been linked to a variety of liver injuries, including prolonged cholestasis, acute self-limiting hepatitis, cirrhosis, hepatic sinusoidal obstruction syndrome, and portal hypertension, and can present clinically as acute severe liver injury.
Itching from liver illness is unlikely to go away on its own, but it can be managed. It’s difficult to say which treatment might work for you because the causes aren’t completely known. It could take a combination of medicines, as well as some trial and error. It’s crucial not to touch that itch because it will just make things worse. Keep your fingernails short so that if you scratch, you don’t break the skin and expose yourself to infection. Showers and baths should be taken with warm or cool water rather than hot water. Spend as little time as possible in hot situations or the sun. Select mild soaps that are free of added perfumes. You can use aqueous cream with 1% menthol if you have a mild, localized itch.
Corticosteroids and calcineurin inhibitors are two more over-the-counter (OTC) topicals that may help with itching. Follow the directions on the label and let your doctor know you’re taking them. Oral treatments such as Cholestyramine (Prevalite), Rifampicin (Rifadin), Naltrexone (Vivitrol), and Sertraline (Zoloft) are recommended by your doctor. Light therapy, often known as phototherapy, is another possibility. To encourage healing, this treatment exposes the skin to specific forms of light. It may take numerous sessions to get everything to function. When treatment fails and your quality of life is seriously impacted, your doctor may suggest that you consider a liver transplant. Even if your liver is still working, this may be a possibility.
To Be Concluded…
The skin is the body’s largest organ, and examining it too short might lead to subtle alterations that are often overlooked. Antihistamines, sedatives, and topical medicines are only successful in a few cases of chronic liver disease patients with pruritus, and the condition is frequently treatment-resistant pruritus. Clinical medicine is less frequently conducted in the modern period since laboratory and radiographic examinations are readily available. Identifying these fascinating clinical indicators not only aids in diagnosis but also gives the clerking physician delight.
Pruritus can have a significant impact on a patient’s quality of life, thus it’s critical to control it throughout liver disease treatment. However, just a few studies have looked into the link between liver disease and pruritus. Seasonal variations have been observed to aggravate itching in the winter or summer, although the existence and magnitude of these variations are unknown. As a result, identifying patient characteristics, pruritus-related factors, and the timing of patients at risk of pruritus is critical.
According to Ayurveda, with proper adherence to dinacharya, ritucharya, and other principles mentioned in Ayurvedic scriptures, staying healthy is but a meager task. Hence, stay fit with Ayurveda…!
Dr. Vikram Chauhan
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