Teetotaler Big B has liver trouble

Updated at: Jan 05, 2013
Teetotaler Big B has liver trouble

He is a teetotaler. He has a complicated medical history. And this is fairly well known to all of us, isn’t it? Yes, we are talking about the “The” Amitabh Bachchan. Not drinking is no guarantee against cirrhosis of the liver.

Editorial Team
CancerWritten by: Editorial TeamPublished at: Jan 05, 2013

Amitabh_liverHe has a complicated medical history. And this is fairly well known to all of us, at almost regular intervals.

“A few days back my blood report showed a sudden rise in my liver counts and the doctor felt it is necessary to investigate further through an MRI”, confesses the angry young man of 80s. “For me this is an every 3 month procedure which is a constant in my routine and my life”, the legendary actor adds.

This 67 year old teetotaler who imbibed this non-alcoholic fatty liver disease 8 years ago admits that his “25% of his liver has been destroyed”, writes Bachchan in his latest blog.

As a precautionary measure he is always under constant vigil and monitoring, to keep checking if there is any further damage taking place to the liver or not.

Here are some facts which must be known to you:


What is non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)?


It is the most common cause for unexplained rise in liver enzymes, unexplained cirrhosis liver and liver cancer. Because of increasing diabetes and obesity, sedentary lifestyle and faulty eating habits, NAFLD is an emerging problem in India.

This disease usually occurs in obese and over-weight patients but as an exception it can also occur even in thin individuals. The disease occurs in non-alcoholics but resembles alcohol related liver disease in most aspects.

In the initial stages the disease is often asymptomatic and comes to attention incidentally while the patient is being worked up for other disease, or has malaise, fatigability, upper abdominal discomfort or during executive check up.

Most of these patients have fatty liver on ultrasound with or without rise in liver enzymes and evidence of insulin resistance. The diagnosis is usually confirmed with exclusion of other causes like hepatitis B and hepatitis C etc. and a liver biopsy may be required to confirm the diagnosis and to know the exact stage of the disease.

Those with mild disease on liver biopsy usually do well on long term but those with severe inflammation and fibrosis (non-alcoholic steatohepatitis) (NASH) can progress to cirrhosis liver and liver cancer over 20-25 years. NAFLD has to be treated with lifestyle interventions like regular exercise, healthy diet, weight reduction in those with overweight and obesity and control of risk factors such as diabetic mellitus, hypertension and lipid abnormalities.


What is alcohol-induced liver disease?


Artemis Health Institute’s Gastroenterology Consultant, Dr Paramvir Singh explains the why, what and how of alcohol-induced liver disease.
The liver breaks down alcohol so it can be eliminated from your body. Some of the by-products of this process are toxic chemicals that, in high concentrations, can damage the liver. In addition, if you consume more alcohol than the liver can process in a given amount of time, the resulting imbalance can injure the liver by interfering with its normal breakdown of protein, fats and carbohydrates.


10 points on safe blood transfusion


Dr Harprit Singh, Associate Consultant, Blood & Transfusion Medicine, Artemis Hospital Gurgaon, guides us on the dos and don’ts on safe blood transfusion.




  • Donate blood regularly and voluntarily
  • Procure the blood components from licensed and reputed blood banks only.
  • Insist on blood component alternative rather than the whole blood
  • Insist on the purest form of blood components, for eg. with low residual WBC
  • Insist on blood which has already been tested for safety, for eg. NAT tested blood
  • Maintain ambient transportation conditions for blood or its components



  • Do not promote paid or professional donation
  • One should not provide false information while donating blood
  • Do not insist on fresh blood, as it means the blood has not been tested for various safety parameters.
  • Blood or its components should not be transfused unnecessarily.



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