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what meds should someone with PBC avoid?

By Anonymous December 25, 2008 - 8:59pm
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HERWriter Guide

Thanks for your question Anon.

With regard to PBC, are you talking about Primary Biliary Cirrhosis?

This is a liver disease where bile ducts are destroyed in the liver, and can lead to cirrhosis. There is no known cause or cure as yet, and it is usually considered an auto-immune disease and mostly affects women. In fact, 9 out of 10 people with PBC are women. There also appears to be a genetic factor to this condition.

You should avoid aspirin as much as you can, and aspirin containing medications. You also need to tell any medical professional that you have PBC so that they can avoid or modify certain prescriptions for you. You will also need to lower your salt intake. You may also want to avoid taking echinacea; it has been seen to cause inflammation of the liver. Small amounts of acetaminophen should be safe.

You may also want to take vitamins and increase your calcium so to avoid osteoporosis, a condition often associated with PBC.

Are you a candidate for a liver transplant?

December 26, 2008 - 6:46am
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Susan Cody)

PBC is a disease that has many differnet presentations and the severity differs as well. Liver function is usually well preserved meaning the metabolism of medications can be handled appropriately unless severe disease is present. Since high cholesterol levels are commonly seen, the use of statins to lower cholesterol is to be avoided as they are potentially toxic to the liver. I am not aware of any adverse effects of aspirin on the liver, but all severe liver diseases have a potential of bleeding issues and then , if that is present, avoidance of aspirin is advised. We advise milk thistle for our patients as an herbal supplement. Acetominophen in low doses are ok.


December 26, 2008 - 11:29am
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