Ascites is the collection of fluid in the abdominal cavity. It is common in people with Cirrhosis of liver and is the result of liver failure due to advanced liver disease. Even though Cirrhosis is the most common cause of ascites some disease conditions such as heart failure, kidney failure , infection or cancer can also cause ascites. It occurs due to the combination of elevated pressure in the veins that are passing through the liver and decrease in the liver function due to scarring of liver due to the cirrhosis.
Symptoms of ascites include increasing abdominal distention and rapid weight gain. You might experience shortness of breath from the accumulation of fluid around the lungs.
Patients can develop abdominal pain , discomfort and difficulty breathing which may limit their ability to perform their normal activities when there is too much fluid accumulation.
When the fluid gets infected it can cause abdominal pain, fever, nausea and tenderness of the abdomen and is called Spontaneous bacterial peritonitis or SBP. The diagnosis is generally made by taking a sample of the fluid from the abdominal cavity. It can be treated with intravenous antibiotics, and after recovery, patients will require long term treatment with antibiotics to prevent SBP from recurring.
Do you need treatment for Ascites? Call Gastroenterology Institute of Orlando, FL at 407-201-3686 to learn more about treatment!