Fibrosis and cirrhosis
With ongoing alcohol abuse, scarring occurs in the liver, Scar tissue replaces the liver cells and, unlike liver cells, performs no function. Scar tissue can interfere with blood flow to and in the liver. Without enough blood, these cells die, and more scar tissue is formed.
Fibrosis is early scarring within the liver. Fibrosis itself causes no symptoms. This may regenerate to some degree.
Cirrhosis is seen with ongoing scarring and the liver tissue is replaced by poorly functioning scar tissue.
The liver gradually loses its ability to function well. In the early stages of the condition, often there are no symptoms. With time and ongoing pressure on the liver with subsequent damage, complications occur such as the development of intra-abdominal fluid (ascites) and swollen veins in the oesophagus ( varies) which can lead to life-threatening bleeding. When the liver damage progresses to cirrhosis, the liver cannot regenerate and the only option is liver transplantation for suitable cases.