My Brother Has Alcohol Liver Disease

i just wanted to share this story with people so others can have hope also... my brother who is just 32 has been a big drinker for many years but was alcohol dependant for the last 5years.. he has been told several times that he had an inflammed liver and had jaundice this was 2yrs ago and if he stopped drinking it would repair back to normal.. he would come out and be off the drink for about 6months then start again and cause so many problems with the family ect words cannot express how stressful and how hard it is dealing with an alcoholic, my brother is so loved that we all have never givin up on him.. he was then showing signs of vomiting blood, stomach swelling becoming very jaundice back in hospital again for 5weeks but again was well looked after and drained several times due to ascites, but once out he was drinking again after 1 month, the drs warned him he had cirrohsis of the liver at this stage and if he drinks he will die but he wouldnt listen he was telling all his family the hospital was happy with him and his liver was now repaired but i new it wasnt from researching the disease, he also went into rehab and we were all relieved but gave up after 2months and came back out drinking again,  in oct 2010 we noticed the jaundice returning and kept tellin him, also his stomach was huge again so all the signs were there again but he drank even more where we were finding him in bushes on streets alsorts, me and my mum have both cared for him and stil didnt give up on him even though everyone told us too... anyway we finaly got my brother back into hospital and immediatley he was diagnosed with end stage liver failure, he wasnt responding to us due to confusion and would just sleep he was so jaundice his stomach was huge, and struggling to breath, the drs got us all in and told us he probably wont make it due to the confusion setting in he would go into a coma, his kidneys were also failing and he was bleeding from the mouth, it was the worst news ever and we were so heartbroken he was my life we had grown up together how was we going to cope... everybody was visiting saying goodbyes! but over the days he started to come around and was responding to us, he has been in there now for 3months and upto 2weeks ago everthing was still failing mainly the kidneys he was on dyalisis and every medication also lactulose for the confusion, the doctors have worked wonders on him and realy stood by him they never once gave up which is why hes now out the danger zone, the drs now got us in a room and have told us he is doin well and the kidneys have gone back to normal his jaundice levels have gone down but hes now got varices in his throat and if they bleed they will be fatal but the drs have managed to put bands round them to stop this.. hes been drained several times and lost about 3st on weight.. but the drs also said if he sticks to all the medications and never touches a drink he wil lead a normal life again and may not have to have a transplant but will go on the list if he needs too..they have said he can come home tomorrow and be checked everyweek till they see progress.. i cant believe he was about to die and now he will be coming home, i never thought he would survive this they said he will probably get more varices in his throat (internal bleeding) but they will handle these! i just want others to no if never give up hope and remeber that things can take a turn for the better...i hope he never does drink again because he has been told excactly how ill he was so i hope this will be enough to stop him he also has a 11yr old son so that should be the wake up call!  doing what your doctor tells you and not touching a drink realy will help you live a normal life and hopefully the liver will start to repair without him having a transplant!  people going through this should also remember if youve got a supportive family then let them help we will never stop supporting my brother he still has along waty to go even coping with life after drink ect... good luck to everyone going through or dealing with someone the same xxx
jenny1981 jenny1981
4 Responses Jan 31, 2011

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I must say that this kind of illness if one have the proper knowledge of liver problem symptoms, for with it there many people can be save. Anyway, thanks for sharing some important information here regarding liver disease.

Thank you for sharing. I was looking for support and how to relate to our situation with my xhusband, who I am friends with because we have a 16 year old daughter. Two days ago I drove 8 hours to get him to a doctor because his girlfriend refused to take him. They have been having problems but both are major alcoholics. I was horrified when he got to the door and I saw how yellow, thin and bloated around the abdomen.
I rushed him to ER because he had to strength and had been crawling around his home.

Really disturbing because his so called "girlfriend" is a nurse and refused to bring him in. He was close to death. His hemoglobin was at 6 and should have been at 14. They have given him 7 units of blood and I heard they just gave another. I hated to leave but I had to get back to my daughter. His Gf is banned from the hospital. They have a watch out for her in case she shows up she will be removed by security. He has fluid building up again and now an infection.
The Doctor has not said "cirrhosis" but every thing I read sure looks like he is at the very worst....and the next systoms will surely be the death of him if he can not stay sober. I would like to print your story and share it with him. Thank you....

after posting this story in jan 2011, in feb 2012 this year my brother died.. he continued to drink last year on and off and ended up in a coma at new year, he came out of the coma and came home after having all treatment possible.. doctors said if he takes his medication properly and stays off drink he should be ok.. they didnt know what his future was due to him being ok previously but he had done further damage which is what they said so the more times you stop and start you do even more damage.. he wasnt drinking this time and tryed to get well at home but he kept getting confused on occasions and experiencing high potassium levels.. also he had ascitites buliding up in his abdomen again to the point he couldnt walk very far he wasnt eating much either. gp was called out and they were confused what to do as the consultant at the hospital said they couldnt drain the fluid due to it being too dangerous incase he got an infection, and it could also be dangerous to put him on water tablets for the fluid aswel, but he did and only a week later my brother woke up very confused shouting ect.. then fell into a coma on our sofa, the ambulance was called and he went straight to intensive care and was in a deep coma.. we new it was differnt this time, after 3days they said he wasnt responding to any treatment and he had got hepatic encephalopathy which was high amonia levels on the brain resulting in his coma.. they said it was upto family if we would like him to come off the ventilator as he wasnt breathing properley without it, we asked the drs to make that decision as we were too upset, eventualy he did and he kept breathing with us by his side for 6days til he finaly took his last breath and passed away! for years of struggling to cope with this and watching him go through so much i used to read all these forums asking for answers and what will happen at the end.. just remember now that even if they come home after a coma the liver releases toxins to the brain causing all the confusion so this is showing the liver isnt functioning properly, thats what happened to my brother 3 times before it eventualy ended his life, i hope anyone going through this can get help or help for a loved one.. we have now got to try cope without him xx<br />
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thanks jenny1981