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How does drinking alcohol affect my liver?

Dr. Michael Roizen, MD
Internal Medicine
The liver is the principle site of metabolism of alcohol and as such remains at the highest risk of damage -- and aging -- from alcohol use. Liver scarring from use of alcohol (cirrhosis) can cause considerable aging. In some urban areas, it's the fourth leading cause of death for individuals twenty-five to sixty-four years of age. Cirrhosis of the liver (alcoholic hepatitis) can cause a person to age even faster than many types of cancers. Because cirrhosis of the liver causes irreversible structural damage, there are few treatment options for the disease once it reaches an advanced stage. Damage to the liver also appears related to a higher risk of cancer.

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