Ammonia levels and liver disease

New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
[ << Previous Thread | Next Thread >> ]

Clueless2010
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 8/17/2010 1:11 PM (GMT -6)   
My husband's ammonia number was 286. He was given lactulose(2x30mg per day).  His liver ultrasound was 'fine'.  He refuses to stop drinking.  He doesn't believe that his condition is dangerous.  What is in store for us?  Hep C has never been part of the discussion.

Butterflythree
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 954
   Posted 8/17/2010 1:48 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Clueless, Does your husband have cirrhosis? No one can really tell you for certain what is in store with liver disease. If you read some of the post you can get a general idea of what may be to come.

I'm sorry that your husband doesn't understand how serious liver disease is. You will be in my prayers.
Butterflythree
 
There is always hope!

hep93
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 12014
   Posted 8/17/2010 2:20 PM (GMT -6)   
Clueless, welcome to the forum. I'm so sorry that your husband is ill with liver disease and won't accept the seriousness of it. Believe me, if his ammonia levels are so high that he's having to take Lactulose, his liver is in bad shape. Someone really needs to stress to him that he will die if he continues to drink. Also, he would have to have 6 months of documented sobriety before he would even be evaluated for transplant. Medical personnel take a very dim view of patients with liver disease who continue to drink, as it's basically a waste of their time. He undoubtedly has alcoholic cirrhosis. (He would need a liver biopsy to determine this, though.) The ultrasound results being "fine" simply means he doesn't yet have cancer. He undoubtedly will NOT be able to quit drinking on his own. I recommend AA. I just celebrated 24 yrs. of sobriety, thanks to that progam.

I suggest you read the information in the folder at the top of the page entitled Hepatitis Resources. It covers liver disease, not necessarily caused by hepatitis. It will give you an idea of what you are in for. Also, as Butterfly suggested, read some of the older posts for an idea of what is to come. In particular, read posts by Allie and NCbornandbred.

Hugs,

Connie
hep93
Forum moderator - Hepatitis
 
"But that was yesterday, and I was a different person then."
Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

Post Edited (hep93) : 8/18/2010 12:12:06 PM (GMT-6)


arneeb
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 2310
   Posted 8/17/2010 11:26 PM (GMT -6)   
Read "On the other side of no treatment" and many of the other posts... death is what awaits... with ammonia levels that high.. just a matter of time... take care of you in all this... that's all I can say.. my thoughts and prayers are with you
There is no pit so deep that He is not deeper still... Corrie Ten Boom

Clueless2010
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 8/18/2010 10:25 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks all of you. I will do as much reading up on this as I can. The AA suggestion would be great if only the man thought he actually had a problem. By giving him the Lactulose, he now has an "antidote" and any personal responsibility is waived. Go figure.

arneeb
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 2310
   Posted 8/18/2010 1:14 PM (GMT -6)   
wow

There is no pit so deep that He is not deeper still... Corrie Ten Boom

Clueless2010
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 8/20/2010 2:07 PM (GMT -6)   
my husband's dr told him to come back in a few weeks & they'll do another ammonia test. Cirrhosis was mentioned but only in passing. Hubby is not as foggy or as tired and hasn't fallen down in a week (was falling 1-2x per wk). Dr told him he could cut back on the lactulose if he felt better (he never thought he was feeling bad in the first place, only I thought he was a mess.) Still drinking a little and dry heaving in the a.m. with hand shaking (no flapping). Seems like only a little drink will start him slurring. Could this ammonia thing be a one time deal with minimal associated problems like next to no scarring, no cancer and no real long term effects? The dr seems so not worried and isn't insistant that hubby quit the drinking. Do I have a mediocre dr? I really need a reality check here friends :(

hep93
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 12014
   Posted 8/20/2010 3:05 PM (GMT -6)   
Clueless, as I mentioned previously, high ammonia levels are indicators that the liver disease has progressed. The liver is unable to clear toxins from the body, resulting in elevated ammonia in the brain. This usually happens in people with cirrhosis. Is your husband's doctor a hepatologist? He needs to be under the care of a liver specialist. Primary care doctors are not knowledgeable enough to deal with liver disease. If his doctor is a hepatologist, I suggest you look for a better one. Your hubby's continued alcohol use is like throwing gasoline on a fire. Dry heaves and shaking could be from alcohol withdrawal if he has cut back. He may need a mild tranquilizer if he stops drinking altogether, until he gets past withdrawal. If this is prescribed, though, I suggest you be the one to regulate the doses.

Hugs,
Connie
hep93
Forum moderator - Hepatitis
 
"But that was yesterday, and I was a different person then."
Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

Clueless2010
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 8/20/2010 3:54 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you Connie. Hubby's dr is a gp. I am upset that he isn't more assertive in insisting the drinking stop, but only the drinker can decide. I am embarrassed that I am so angry with my husband for contributing to his condition. He denies the damage to his liver, he denies the dr told him to stop drinking, he denies anything is wrong or that things could be very serious. I almost wish I had not started to research this situation- I hate being angry and scared. I don't know which to deal with first, the alcoholism or the liver disease. I just called home to check on him and he's already slurring. This is breaking my heart. How can he say he cares if he makes no effort to take care of himself. He already takes anti-depressants. He sees a counselor but he isn't entirely honest or forthcoming (I've been to a few sessions w/him.) He doesn't work and our $ will be gone soon, as will the charity of family. We will lose our house, be buried under medical bills and massive debt (already) and I will be a widow at 48. He can't hear me. I am finding it hard to feel bad for him because the anger is taking over and swallowing me whole! I can't beg, bargain or threaten anymore. Maybe it's time to let him do his own thing with out my constant nagging and interference. Is that what God wants me to do? Step back and not try to control things? In re-reading this post, I sure sound like a mean b****h. I've never said any of this aloud and now I'm really ashamed of myself. Thanks for the ear- even if I did chew it off!

**David**
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 3291
   Posted 8/20/2010 5:04 PM (GMT -6)   
You're feeling exactly as you should. If he's not willing to do what it takes, maybe it's time to scare him. File for divorce and that could be a wake up for him. Should he choose to continue down this path, get him out of the house, get the divorce and move on. Why would anyone let their life be ruined by somebody else? Especially someone who isn't willing to think of what they're doing to a loved one. Given his attitude, this isn't love. Get tough, you needn't go down with the ship. Be well.
"No good deed goes unpunished."

hep93
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 12014
   Posted 8/20/2010 5:51 PM (GMT -6)   

What you are feeling and expressing is entirely normal.  You need to see that he gets a referral to a hepatologist.  But you cannot stop him from drinking.  He has to be the one to do that--to WANT to stop and then go about getting the help he needs to quit.

You need to decide if you are willing to put up with this behavior or have had enough and are ready to walk.  As a sober alcoholic, for me it would be an easy decision.  Life is too short to be unhappy.

And by the way, alcohol and antidepressants are a deadly combination.  Also, since alcohol is a central nervous system depressant, it is canceling out any good the antidepressants might be doing.  He may as well not take them.

Hugs,

Connie



hep93
Forum moderator - Hepatitis
 
"But that was yesterday, and I was a different person then."
Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

mer
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 613
   Posted 8/20/2010 8:05 PM (GMT -6)   
I am so sorry you are in this situation. To be honest, his GP may not be referring him anywhere because he knows of your husband's drinking situation and his lack of interest in stopping or getting any help. I know that sounds horrible, but unfortunately, alot of doctors just won't go any further w/ any treatment if they know the patient has a drinking problem. As for you, you need and you will find the strength to put your foot down. You need to let him know that his behavior is no longer acceptible in your household and make HIM make the choice! You need to protect yourself and your family if you have any kids. None of you deserve to live like that. Again, I am so sorry that you are in this, and I do pray that he decides to get help soon. You also have every right to be angry...perfectly normal reaction. My husband, too is a sober alcoholic, and we were lucky enough that he decided to quit drinking after he was drinking and taking the treatment for his hep C and ended up in a psychosis, which put him in a mental hospital......unfortunately, that was his bottom. Thankfully he quit drinking then and has been sober for 6 years now.

Praying for you!
Mer

arneeb
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 2310
   Posted 8/21/2010 12:15 AM (GMT -6)   
Dear Clueless... wow ur not those names u wrote... that's just pure outright fear there... helplessness... and alll those emtions that run through your mind when a person is face with this situation... your husband may forget what the doctor says.. or may just plain be in denial... hopefully something can pull him back from the brink... to sobriety... but an intervention needs to happen.. of some kind.. and u need to plan and think for u... u r in my thoughts and prayers..
There is no pit so deep that He is not deeper still... Corrie Ten Boom

shadowsghost
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 489
   Posted 8/21/2010 10:31 PM (GMT -6)   
Clueless, I was taught that when someone doesnt chose to stop that you have to back off. If they pass out on the floor leave them, do not enable the behavior. You cant help him with his medical issues if he isnt sober cause it is all for naught! You can take care of you, you will worry yourself sick and be no good to anyone. Drs will only give him the care to treat urgent stuff as they are obligated but will not go out of their way if he isnt helping himself and being a participant. What you are feeling is so normal for someone in your position and never apologize for it
Sue
Adapt yourself to the life you have been given; and truly love the people with whom destiny has surrounded you.
New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
Forum Information
Currently it is Wednesday, September 17, 2014 4:35 PM (GMT -6)
There are a total of 2,220,452 posts in 247,094 threads.
View Active Threads


Who's Online
This forum has 156406 registered members. Please welcome our newest member, NeedItHarder.
481 Guest(s), 27 Registered Member(s) are currently online.  Details
MarieLS, MamaLama, Tunnelvisionary, StarGirl10, Tirzah, creed_three, brt4545, Dixie6, Hep 97, themiz, hampy12, sknight, Tudpock18, NiceCupOfTea, pink1, *JimO*, soystud, churey360, Joey911, Krys4787, wampuscats, Goldengirl2014, annadee, quincy17, roxy8820, Myself 09, Ivs17


Follow HealingWell.com on Facebook  Follow HealingWell.com on Twitter  Follow HealingWell.com on Pinterest  Follow HealingWell.com on YouTube
Advertisement
Advertisement

©1996-2014 HealingWell.com LLC  All rights reserved.

Advertise | Privacy Policy & Disclaimer