HEALTH MAT­TERS

Macclesfield Express - - MACCLESFIELD PEOPLE -

●● Dr Ian Hulme, GP with Mead­ow­side Med­i­cal Cen­tre, Con­gle­ton and clin­i­cal lead on sub­stance mis­use for NHS East­ern Cheshire CCG. AS a busy GP, I’ve seen a wor­ry­ing rise in re­cent years in the num­ber of pa­tients with liver dis­ease.

Na­tion­ally, liver dis­ease deaths have risen by more than 10 per cent in re­cent years and, if this trend con­tin­ues, deaths are ex­pected to dou­ble in the next 20 years.

Twice as many peo­ple now die from liver dis­ease as in 1991, and liver dis­ease is the fifth big­gest killer in Eng­land and Wales af­ter heart dis­ease, can­cer, stroke and res­pi­ra­tory dis­ease.

Lo­cally, 139 peo­ple from East­ern Cheshire were ad­mit­ted to hos­pi­tal from A&E with liver dis­ease in 2013, ris­ing slightly to 141 in 2014.

Be­tween Jan­uary and Oc­to­ber this year, 113 peo­ple were ad­mit­ted to hos­pi­tal with liver dis­ease – mean­ing we are likely to see sim­i­lar lev­els of ad­mit­tance as in pre­vi­ous years, with the ma­jor­ity of th­ese cases caused by al­co­hol mis­use. It’s not all bad news though, as al­though rates of al­co­hol­re­lated liver dis­ease in East­ern Cheshire were far above the na­tional av­er­age be­tween 2011 and 2013, lev­els de­clined dra­mat­i­cally in 2014 and we now sit be­low the na­tional av­er­age.

More­over, the liver is a re­mark­ably durable or­gan that can re­turn to nor­mal in as lit­tle as 24 hours – as long as no last­ing dam­age has been done.

There are three sim­ple steps that peo­ple can take to knock their liv­ers back into shape quickly: ●● Keep off al­co­hol for two or three days in a

●● Dr Ian Hulme

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