Liver disease occurs in children for a variety of reasons. Babies may have problems with inherited disease, despite having healthy parents. Congenital problems where the bile ducts don’t develop normally may also cause problems in babies. Infections may also lead to the development of liver disease in the very young. Determining the correct diagnosis quickly can have a profound effect on outcome in these cases.
Older children may develop liver disease for many of the same reasons as younger children. In addition, drug reactions, infections – including hepatitis A, B and C – can result in liver disease in the older child and teenager. Obesity is also a leading cause of liver disease and is currently the leading cause of liver disease in patients treated at Nationwide Children’s Hospital.
The diagnosis of liver disease can be stressful and sometimes frightening for families. We work quickly to develop an accurate diagnosis and support the family with information and understanding. Our comprehensive team includes physician specialists, registered nurses, dietitians, social workers, pharmacists, radiologists and pathologists. Our liver clinic follows a wide range of patients:
Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency
Glycogen Storage Disease
Hepatitis A, B and C
Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD)
Pre- and Post-Transplant Patients
Rare Bile Acids
Synthetic and Transport Defects
Fatty liver disease from obesity is becoming a major health issue in the United States. We follow many patients with this diagnosis and work closely with the Center for Healthy Weight and Nutrition to treat this disease. We also work closely with the Teen Clinic in the diagnosis and management of acute hepatitis C from intravenous drug use.