Medications and Toxins in certain patients and in certain levels can cause serious affects to the liver and other systems within the body.
Drug and Toxin -induced liver diseases are diseases of the liver that are caused by the following:
1.) Over-the-counter medications and vitamins
2.) Physician-prescribed medications
3.) Illicit (“recreational”) drugs
4.) Excessive Hormones
5.) Excessive Herbs
6.) Environmental toxins
7.) Cleaning chemicals from home
Can cause hepatic injury or injury to the Liver
- Loss of appetite
- Abdominal pain
- Jaundice (yellowing of skin)
- Increase in bruising
- Ascites – fluid in abdominal region
- Kidney failure
- Mental status changes
- Injury to liver can cause abnormal blood work related to the liver including:
1.) AST (aspartate amino transferase)
2.) ALT (alanie aminotransferase)
3.) Alkaline Phosphatase
Injury to Liver by Drugs
- Can occur in several ways
- Some drugs are directly injurious to the liver;
- Some are changed [metabolized] by the liver into chemicals that can be injurious to the liver directly or indirectly.
There are three types of liver toxicity
1.) Dose-dependent toxicity
2.) Diosyncratic toxicity
3.) Drug Allergy
- Is related to the quantity of drug taken
- Causes liver disease in most people if enough [to much] of the drug is taken.
- The most important example of dose-dependent toxicity is Tylenol [Acetaminophen].
- Causes disease in only those few patients
- These individuals have a genetic component
- As a result the chemical changes of that specific drug, cause a build up of the drug or products.
- The build up then causes damage to the liver.
- This occurs very more often then expected
- Occurs on average somewhere between 1-10 per 100,000.
- Idiosyncratic liver disease is the most common form of drug-induced liver disease because tens of millions of individuals are using drugs, and many of them are using several drugs.
- Also can cause liver disease
- This is much less common
- With a drug allergy, the liver is injured by the inflammation
- The immune system is attacking the drugs and liver with antibodies and immune cells.
Most common medications:
- Heavy metals