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What is Ascites?

When the excess fluid gets accumulated in the peritoneal cavity, the condition is called ascites.

The peritoneal cavity is the space between the tissues lining the abdomen and organs of the abdominal cavity.

Various diseases result in the accumulation of fluid.

Who are more affected?

Females are more affected to ascites as compared to men.

What are the reasons for ascites?

The exact mechanism of ascites development is not completely known. Several theories suggest that increase in portal blood pressure and the decrease in albumin may be responsible for the formation of abdominal fluid.

What are the symptoms of ascitis?

-weight loss

-distension of abdomen

-loss of appetite

-breathing difficulty

-pain in abdomen

-heart burn

-nauseating feeling

-bloating sensation in abdomen.

What are the causes for ascites?

Causes for the formation of ascites are:

-Cirrhosis of the liver.



-Kidney diseases.

-Congestive heart failure.

-Venous Insufficiency.

-Chronic alcohol abuse.

How you get to know that disease is progressing?

Mild ascites may not be associated with any symptoms. However, following symptoms appear as the disease progresses:

-Abdominal pain.



-Shortness of breath.

Is ascites life threatening?

Accumulation of fluid in abdomen is not life threatening but it indicates risk for infection, kidney problem or liver disease.

How to confirm ascites?

Following tests may be done to determine the underlying cause:

• Complete blood count

• Urine test

• Creatinine and electrolyte levels

• Kidney function tests

• Liver function tests

• Prothrombin time

• Paracentesis may also be performed.

What is the treatment for ascites?

The treatment of ascites mainly depends on the underlying cause. Following are the treatment options:

-Diuretic medicines

-Therapeutic paracentesis (to remove large amount of fluid)

-Surgery: Trans-jugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt which helps to reroute the blood around the liver.

-Liver transplant: It is done in cases of end-stage of liver disease.

-Intake of salt is lowered.

Homeopathic treatment for ascites?



-Natrum mur


-Acetic acid


-Blatta Americana


What are the dietary management for ascites?

Management of ascites includes bed rest, low intake of salt, diuretics, and treatment of the cause of ascites.


-Low intake of salt.

-Fluid restriction to one liter per day.

-Avoid alcohol.

-High protein diet.

Differential diagnosis

• Alcoholic Hepatitis.

• Viral hepatitis.

• Cirrhosis.

• Portal Hypertension.

• Primary Biliary Cirrhosis.

• Biliary Disease.

• Hepatocellular Adenoma.

• Hepatorenal Syndrome.

• Nephrotic Syndrome.

• Cardiomyopathy.

For more information, you can visit WebMD and eMedicine.


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