Macronodular cirrhosis is a type of cirrhosis, or scarring of the liver. It means the person has nodules, or irregular growths of tissue, more than 3 millimeters (mm) wide on the liver.

Cirrhosis is irreversible liver damage. Over time, scar tissue replaces healthy tissue. Nodules, or lumps of abnormal tissue, can also grow on the liver. These changes may stop the liver from working properly.

An estimated 1 in every 400 adults in the United States has cirrhosis. It is most common in people between the ages of 45 and 54.

There is no cure for cirrhosis, but doctors and people can take steps to slow the progression of the disease.

This article will explain what macronodular cirrhosis involves and how it differs from micronodular cirrhosis. It will also look at the causes, symptoms, and treatment options.

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Macronodular cirrhosis means that the person has scarring and nodules of more than 3 mm in diameter on the liver.

It is most likely to result from:

However, it can also indicate a progression of micronodular cirrhosis.

Macronodular cirrhosis is one type of cirrhosis. There is also micronodular and mixed cirrhosis. These have their own definitions but may also be stages on the way to developing macronodular cirrhosis.

Micronodular cirrhosis involves scarring of the liver and nodules less than 3 mm in diameter.

Micronodular cirrhosis has links to:

Mixed cirrhosis involves scarring of the liver and nodules both smaller and greater than 3 mm in diameter.

Cirrhosis can stem from many factors. In some people, there may be more than one cause.

The most common causes are:

Less common causes include:

The liver has many functions, including:

  • storing nutrients
  • removing waste products and dead cells from the blood
  • filtering and processing the chemicals in food, alcohol, and medicines
  • producing the bile the body needs to digest fats and remove waste products

Because of the liver’s vital role in the body, cirrhosis can affect multiple organs and systems, including the:

Not everyone with cirrhosis will experience symptoms. In the early stages, a doctor will usually diagnose it incidentally when they are looking for something else.

In time, however, symptoms can appear, and they may include:

Cirrhosis can worsen over time. This may lead to additional symptoms, such as:

There is currently no cure for cirrhosis, but some actions may help slow or stop its progression. They include:

In some cases, doctors may recommend a liver transplant.

The outlook depends on the stage or severity of cirrhosis at diagnosis.

Compensated cirrhosis is when doctors diagnose cirrhosis before symptoms appear. At this stage, the liver can still compensate for the damage and function effectively.

The 10-year survival rate of compensated cirrhosis is 47%. That means the person has a 47% chance of living at least another 10 years compared with someone who does not have cirrhosis.

Decompensated cirrhosis is when a person has started to experience symptoms. At this point, the body will experience problems due to a lack of liver function.

The 10-year survival rate for decompensated cirrhosis is 16%.

However, it is important to remember that these figures are just a guide, and many factors can affect the outcome, including a person’s age, lifestyle habits, and other health considerations.

What is the outlook for people with cirrhosis?

Macronodular cirrhosis is when a person has nodules of more than 3 mm in diameter on their liver. If there are nodules of less than 3 mm, the person has micronodular cirrhosis.

Factors that can cause cirrhosis include alcohol use and hepatitis.

There is currently no cure for macronodular cirrhosis, but steps to slow or stop its progression include avoiding alcohol and eating a nutritious and varied diet.

In some cases, doctors may recommend a liver transplant.