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Also see "Dr. Melissa Palmer's Guide To Hepatitis and Liver Disease." https://amzn.to/1MCnnrS.
Autoimmune hepatitis is the type of hepatitis that occurs when your own immune system - which normally protects you from attack by germs and foreign substances - mistakenly targets your liver like a potentially harmful invader.
Hepatitis is a liver disorder that occurs when the liver becomes inflamed due to one of several causes.
If autoimmune hepatitis goes untreated, it can result in serious liver damage from scarring (known as cirrhosis). This may eventually lead to liver failure, requiring a liver transplant.
Causes of autoimmune hepatitis are unclear. But there's some evidence that autoimmune hepatitis may be triggered by certain infections, diseases, toxins, or drugs. Certain individuals may have a genetic predisposition.
Autoimmune hepatitis sometimes follows a hepatitis C infection. This can be especially harmful to liver cells, which are not only damaged by hepatitis C but are also damaged by attack from the immune system.
Autoimmune hepatitis often occurs at the same time as other disorders that are not related to the liver, including diabetes, kidney problems, ulcerative colitis, anemia and thyroiditis.
Two main types have been described by medical researchers.
Type 1 This type of autoimmune hepatitis.is the most common. It happens to people of all ages, and approximately 50 percent have other autoimmune disorders.
Type 2 happens more frequently to young girls in conjunction with other autoimmune problems.
Symptoms of autoimmune hepatitis
Symptoms are similar to other forms of hepatitis.
light colored stools (often described as "clay-colored")
nausea and vomiting
urine that is darker than usual
Symptoms may be mild or severe. They may occur rapidly or develop over time.