Primary Biliary Cholangitis (PBC) in Little Rock, AR
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What is PBC (primary biliary cholangitis)?
Primary biliary cholangitis (PBC), previously known as primary biliary cirrhosis, is an uncommon chronic liver disease. Primary biliary cholangitis is a progressive autoimmune disorder that slowly damages the bile ducts (called the intrahepatic bile ducts) within the liver. Bile helps in digestion and transports away LDL cholesterol, toxic substances, and bilirubin. This disease might also result in severe issues in the liver. When the bile ducts are harmed or destroyed, then bile can accumulate in your liver and lead to scarring. If the liver incurs too much damage, it could cause liver cirrhosis.
To hear more info regarding this issue or to locate therapy for primary biliary cholangitis (PBC) in Little Rock, AR, we encourage you to set up an appointment at our practice. Our GastroArkansas providers are proud to provide customized treatments for patients within the nearby areas.
What is the cause of primary biliary cholangitis?
Primary biliary cholangitis is an immune system disorder. This means that the body incorrectly destroys healthy cells and tissues. Liver inflammation exists when white blood cells, referred to as T cells (T lymphocytes), begin to collect and harm normal cells in the liver. Swelling in the bile ducts spreads to other parts of the liver, killing those cells and causing scar tissue. As the liver scarring increases, it begins to work inadequately, resulting in cirrhosis. It is uncertain what makes these white blood cells harm healthy cells, but it seems to be inherited.
Factors of increased risk
A few of the risk determinants connected with having primary biliary cholangitis include:
- Being 30 – 60 years old
- Some infections
- Being a woman
- Family line (people are at an increased risk of primary biliary cholangitis if a family member has experienced it)
- Tobacco and similar toxins
- Geographic location (PBC is most prevalent in North America and northern Europe)
To receive additional information regarding PBC and the way it impacts a person's body, reach out to a gastroenterologist at GastroArkansas now.
What are the indicators of PBC?
Commonly, symptoms of PBC aren't seen until five to 20 years following detection. The diagnosis of PBC normally occurs while looking for other problems. The early indicators of PBC include tiredness, dry eyes and mouth, and itching of the skin.
Additional standard markers of PBC include:
- Upper right abdominal pain
- Dark and greasy bowel movements
- Yellowing of the skin or eyes (jaundice)
- Swollen feet and ankles
- Muscle soreness
- Brittle bones
- High cholesterol
- Dark-colored skin not caused by sun rays
- Painful joints
It is essential to detect PBC as early on as feasible. If you think you may be at risk of experiencing PBC related to family history, or a combination of the above symptoms, our Little Rock, AR digestive health specialists are equipped to assist.
What are the therapies for PBC?
At present, there is no way to reverse primary biliary cholangitis. Therapy aids in slowing the development of the disease and addressing the complications. Some of the common treatment recommendations include:
- Obeticholic acid (helps liver health)
- Liver transplant surgery
- Vitamin supplements
- Staying active
- Fibrates (lower itching and liver inflammation)
- Ursodeoxycholic acid (helps flush bile out of your liver)
The standard life expectancy for a person with PBC once they start displaying symptoms is a decade unless they get a liver transplant. Although there is no cure, you can receive the treatment necessary to live a better life. Our gastrointestinal physicians are ready to guide you through the treatment choices accessible to you.
Find care for primary biliary cholangitis
If you or a family member could be showing the signs or symptoms of primary biliary cholangitis, rest assured that individualized support is obtainable. The gastrointestinal specialists at GastroArkansas are happy to offer intervention options to help you handle this liver problem for improved health and well-being. To talk to a doctor with expertise in care for primary biliary cholangitis in Little Rock, AR, don't hesitate to contact our staff now.
Dr. Robertson was great, he answered all of my questions, very personable, and made sure I knew every step of the process.
Dr. Stokes is very competent and takes time to listen to you.
I am the former former Director of Admissions and Recruitment at the UAMS College of Medicine, now owner of Premed Coach. My daughter is an MD. I know a good doc when I experience one. Dr. Morrison is knowledgeable, invested in her patients, she knows how to ask the right questions, totally sincere, and personable. Invests in her patients to the max. I wouldn't go elsewhere!
Very thorough and kind. He took the time to answer all my questions! Would definitely recommend him.
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