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Liver Disease 

Liver Disease
Chapter:
Liver Disease
Author(s):

Catiele Antunes

, and Alia S. Dadabhai

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780190933043.003.0023
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date: 19 April 2021

Herbal and dietary supplements (HDS) have been increasingly popularized by the internet to augment or serve as alternatives to standard medical treatment in a variety of diseases. With respect to the liver, milk thistle is among the most popular, but a wide range of other therapies are also being used to treat liver diseases, from fatty liver to viral hepatitis. In this chapter, the effects of natural remedies on the liver are outlined as solo or complementary therapies. Hepatotoxicity and acute liver failure from unregulated use of these HDS are also discussed. Natural alternatives used to treat other medical conditions that can adversely affect the liver (via metabolic breakdown or direct hepatic injury) are summarized, along with the proposed mechanism of injury. Increased awareness on the part of the hepatologist or PCP to include an HDS evaluation can be a valuable tool to treat and diagnose liver injury.

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