Drug-induced liver disease


Drug-induced liver diseases are liver diseases caused by physician-prescribed medications, OTC medications, vitamins, hormones, herbs, illegal drugs, and environmental toxins.
Drugs can cause liver disease in following ways:
1. Oxygen radicals produced by drugs result in lipid peroxidation which damages the liver cells.
2. Drugs are catalyzed by the cytochromes P450 (CYP) in the liver. Genetic and environmental factors change the phenotype of cytochromes P450 (CYP). Some drugs are catalyzed by the different CYP and produce electrophilic metabolites. Such metabolites can react with the membrane of liver cells and liver mitochondria to cause cell damage.


Make a comprehensive diagnosis according to disease history, symptom, sign, chemical examination and liver biopsy if necessary.


The treatment for drug-induced liver disease should start from stopping the drug causing the liver disease. In most patients, signs and symptoms of liver disease will disappear and blood tests will resume normal levels and normally there will be no long-term liver damage. Liver transplantation may be considered for some patients with acute liver failure.