According to the US News, even if the virus increases liver stiffness, researchers caution that it is too early to know if the virus’s effects on liver stiffness are a precursor to more severe liver sickness.
Dr. Theodore Pierce, an abdominal radiologist at MGH in Boston, has demonstrated that COVID infections can affect many organs, producing inflammation and damage. Fibrosis, or the accumulation of scar tissue in the liver, is a symptom of liver illness and a leading cause of hepatic stiffness. Scarring can reduce the quantity of healthy liver tissue, impairing liver function. There is some indication that fibrosis can progress to liver cancer or perhaps total liver failure.
Pierce argues that it is too early to tell whether COVID-19’s liver damage is permanent.”We honestly don’t know what will happen to them since we haven’t researched them for a long time,” he added, referring to COVID’s brief existence. “The liver damage induced by this disease can be fatal. Furthermore, COVID-19-related liver damage and other types of liver disease may interact synergistically.”
Fatty liver disease, according to Pierce, is quickly becoming the leading cause of advanced liver disease, impacting an estimated 100 million Americans. He also said that persons predisposed to liver cirrhosis might be more vulnerable to COVID infection.
Researchers intend to monitor COVID-19 participants to see whether they develop life-threatening liver disease. Furthermore, scientists want to know if COVID has a role in developing liver stiffness. To reach this purpose, they want to delve deeper into their data.
Finally, researchers want to know if those who test positive for COVID but have no symptoms suffer from liver damage and, if so, how serious it is.
“You’d think that worse COVID-19 infection would lead to more liver damage,” Pierce says. “If we could detect that association, it would be more evidence to show that COVID-19 is causing liver damage, not just some bizarre coincidence.”
The researchers discovered a significant difference between 50 and 31 when comparing the liver stiffness of persons with and without COVID-19. After adjusting for age, gender, and time since COVID diagnosis, the researchers discovered that COVID-19 patients had considerably more liver stiffness than the control group.
Liver stiffness was seen in those who tested negative for COVID-19. That’s an unexpected result. According to Pierce, those infected with COVID-19 do not risk liver damage. It was comforting to hear him assure his audience that “our results are fairly preliminary” and that they need not “panic.” However, our study’s findings should not be used to make clinical judgments.
Dr. Marc Siegel of New York University Langone Medical Center says, “I don’t think the research is large enough to conclude, especially if the results are long-lasting.” However, this suggests that COVID infections may affect the liver, at least in the age range studied. That conforms to what we know about COVID’s far-reaching impacts on various systems.