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Hepatology is a branch of medicine concerned with the study, prevention, diagnosis, and management of diseases that affect the liver, gallbladder, biliary tree, and pancreas. The primary conditions encountered by hepatologists deal include viral hepatitis and alcohol-related liver disease. The goal of hepatologists is to help diagnose and treat hepatic conditions, such as hepatitis, fatty liver disease, pancreatitis, and more. 

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About Hepatology

Hepatology is sometimes considered a branch of gastroenterology because both specialties encompass some of the same organs. A gastroenterologist can help diagnose and treat similar conditions, but a hepatologist’s focus is narrower. Hepatologists perform a wide range of procedures that help diagnose or treat conditions that affect your hepatic system.  Hepatology deals with a number of liver diseases such as hepatitis infections, fatty liver disease, both alcohol-related and not, jaundice, cirrhosis, metabolic liver diseases, liver cancer, gallbladder inflammation, bile duct stones, bile duct adenomas (noncancerous tumors), bile duct cancer and more. 

Procedure of Hepatology

The hepatologist will begin by taking a detailed medical history, including any symptoms you may be experiencing and any relevant past medical conditions.

Several diagnostic tests are involved such as liver function tests (LFTs) to assess the liver's ability to process proteins, cholesterol, and bilirubin.

In some cases, a liver biopsy may be performed to obtain a sample of liver tissue for further analysis. This can help determine the cause and severity of liver disease.

Based on the results of the diagnostic tests, the hepatologist will make a diagnosis and develop a treatment plan tailored to your specific condition.

Treatment may involve medications, lifestyle modifications, dietary changes, or procedures such as liver transplantation in cases of severe liver disease.

Hepatologists provide ongoing care for patients with chronic liver diseases, monitoring their condition through regular check-ups, blood tests, and imaging studies.

They may also provide education and support to help patients manage their condition and minimize the risk of complications.

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