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    Includes Expert Content
    Auto-Immune Hepatitis
    hunnebeee posted:
    Everyone always talks about Hepatitis C. I would like to discuss
    Auto-Immune Hepatitis. I was told my Auto-Immune Hepatitis was caused from over-the-counter medicines. OTC drugs with acetaminophen and other ingredients. I never was a pill popper; however, I use to take three tylenol, or other head-ache pills (not together, of course.) because two gave me no relief. I found out I was at stage three auto-immune hepatitis and then started taking steriods and immuran. Also, I gave my blood every week for over two and a half years and had biopsies.I would love to discuss with anyone else how this disease has affected their life and if they have been healed or are in remission.
    catsarethebest replied to eeyoregirl's response:
    I'm new here, diagnosed about 3 years ago. I'm 60 and have stage 2 fibrosis. Your message struck me, because I, too, have psoriatic arthritis and was receiving Remicade infusions when my liver enzymes elevated. First they thought it was NASH (non-alcoholic steatohepatitis), but the hepatologist finally diagnosed me with AIH. She forbid me from taking Remicade again - or any of those drugs (enbrel, etc.).

    So far, the prednisone is keeping both my AIH and PsA in check. I'm also taking Imuran.

    I've wondered whether Remicade "caused" my AIH. But my mother had AIH, so did I inherit it? My hepatologist told me I'd probably had it for 20 years before being diagnosed.

    I'm in remisiion but still don't feel well. Fatigue and right side ache are common. Should I be feeling good if my liver enzymes are normal and bloodwork good??

    Does Prednisone help your PsA? My mind is also fuzzy. Two times recently, I drove at night without putting on my headlights.
    geogirl responded:
    You can make life easier for your liver using Supplements and eating right, I'm very careful about all of the meds I take to check for possible side effects like jaundice, etc since you know they are particularly hard on your liver. I changed my deodorant to a natural Sea salt that works fine and I have eliminated a carcinogen (Aluminum Chlorhydroxide) that is in most major brands. All these seemingly little things have collectively made me much better than in previous years with my cirrhosis. (no matter the cause) If you took the Tylenol after a night of drinking, that's probably your culprit. Either way, don't take it ever again. If you can take aspirin, do that. Beware rx'd pain relievers sometimes have Tylenol in them, Make sure they don't. Good luck on your journey.
    geogirl replied to An_192538's response:
    I highly doubt it is stress. It could be caused from your thyroid meds. Research the meds in the patient insert or online. Ask you pharmacist. I do know that your thyroid and liver interact so Doctors aren't real quick to tell you things like: That stomach acid pump inhibitor Rx I'm prescribing you is going to give you osteoporosis. But, indeed, it does. So learn all you can about how to heal your liver and what may be harming it and you'll fare better. Best Wishes
    loyalt responded:
    Hello hunnebeee. I was diagnosed with Stage 2 AIH in April of 2007 after relocating to Nebraska. I started having symptoms (jaundice, fatigue, dark urine and itchy skin) while living in Missouri and multiple tests and a biopsy showed that I did, in fact, have the immune disease. I was put on 60 mg of prednisone a day, for the first 3 months. My doctor then began to taper my dosage and about 6 months later, I felt fine and began my weight loss program...from all the prednisone. I believe I was healed, only because I am a believer in the ONE that heals. I do occasionally have slight pain on my right side but, overall, I feel great. I will go to my liver doctor soon just to find out for sure but for now, I feel 100% better than when I was diagnosed. I will say that I am a migraine headache sufferer and before I was diagnosed, I took Tylenol daily and definitely more than I should have and I believe this is what started it all. I am very careful now about taking Acetaminophen. AIH and Headaches: is there something to this? Well, God's best for you.
    shelleycat replied to Melissa Palmer, MD's response:
    My daugherr has has auto immune hep since sge 6. She is on 100 mg of imuran. Is this considered low.
    shelleycat replied to mccindy's response:
    My daighter has aih. The doctor told us it is very likely to develop another auto immune disease,
    mccindy replied to shelleycat's response:
    That is true...but both my husband and I only have one autoimmune disease while our daughter has 3. And all of us were diagnosed 10 years ago.
    Will keep my fingers crossed...AIH is enough to live with.
    storymuse replied to mccindy's response:
    Hi Cindy, I just joined this site to share something I recently learned about AIH and other autoimmune diseases, from my personal story. Last year I discovered I have an autoimmune disease against gluten, and in the 1 years since, have been researching everything I can to find healing. I was shocked to learn that many autoimmune diseases are related to gluten intolerance, including AIH, hypothyroidism, allergies, asthma, and migraine headaches (I have just listed the ones I suffer from, by no means all). The science indicates that every single autoimmune disease begins with increased intestinal permeability (also called leaky gut). What precipitated my research into autoimmune diseases, and subsequent test for gluten sensitivity (a clear positive), was my mother's death two years ago from blood poisoning, caused in part by a severely leaky gut. She also had rheumatoid arthritis, hypothyroidism, and all other of my autoimmune diseases except AIH. My sister has most of the same. I learned that autoimmune diseases always require three triggers: lifestyle (which includes food, stress, and certain drugs), leaky gut, and genetics (which are actually the least responsible of the three triggers). Please, all of you who suffer from autoimmune diseases (because having one usually means you will have more), get tested for gluten intolerance! Since removing gluten and a few other dietary triggers from my diet, I have healed almost all of my diseases. Within two weeks of eliminating gluten, all my allergies, asthma, and migraines went away, never to return except for the one time I ate bread as part of the test. My immediate reaction and recurrence of symptoms convinced me to eliminate gluten for the rest of my life. There is excellent research on the web; Sarah Ballantyne PhD is a scientist who specializes in this stuff. Check out her book, the Paleo Approach, for more info. Good luck in your healing!
    victoria417 replied to loyalt's response:
    Hi Loyalt,

    How are you feeling now? Are you off all medication?
    victoria417 replied to mccindy's response:
    Hi Mccindy,

    You seem to have a wealthy of knowledge about AIH.. i would love to talk to you. I was diagnosed in Jan. 14 i am currently taking 30mg daily prednisone and 50mg azathioprine. My LFT are still elevated in the 150-200. What can i do to reduced my LFT levels? It has been 8 weeks of drug treatment. are you currently remission? if so, for how long have you been in remission? Thank you.
    mccindy replied to victoria417's response:
    Hello Victoria,
    My knowledge of AIH is 10 years old so I don't have any current information I can give you. I have been in remission almost 7 years. I didn't keep any records after being released from the hospital...not many cases of AIH back then. When I was released from the hospital I was on 20mg of Prednisone and 50mg of Purinethol [6-MP> My AST was 125 and AFT 145. I had an allergic reaction to the 6-MP and was put on Imuran...wish I could tell you the dose but I can't. All my records were sent to U of Michigan, except for the return stay at the hospital when I had the allergic reaction. My most recent biopsy of the liver was done 2 years ago while I was in the hospital to have my gall bladder changes. It has been a journey from being made ready to be put on a transplant list, to being in remission...but with AIH anything can happen.

    So tell me about yourself Victoria. How did the doctor find your AIH? Did they do a biopsy on you? Has your dose of prednisone or azathioprine been lowered? Have your AST and ALT scores been coming down?

    Wait a minute, you said your LFT scores. Are you talking about your lungs?

    victoria417 replied to mccindy's response:
    hi cindy,

    Remission....what a blessing. Does this mean you are not taking any mediation at all?

    I found out about my elevated liver enzymes after a routine check up. I was floored when my doctor told me my alt an ast were 750 & 635 respectively. My liver biopsy determined it was auto immune. I was then put on 40mg prednisone and 50mg azathioprine. the numbers have come down quite a bit to 125 and 200 however, still not to what is considered normal.

    LFT's are Liver function test. I think terms have changed a bit over the years.
    mccindy replied to victoria417's response:
    Hi Victoria,

    I have not been on any medications in many years. So there is hope for you too. I think your scores are coming down real good. The speed which they come down is not important...

    Has your doctor talked about a biopsy? Was a CT or MRI done? Maybe they don't do them now.

    I don't know how to lower your LFT scores Victoria. The only thing I remember being told was not to eat asparagrass...but that could have been because of the meds and not anything to do with the liver.

    Keep me posted. And if I can answer any more questions I am here.
    victoria417 replied to mccindy's response:
    Wow!!! no medication for years?!!! That's extremely encouraging. Please visit the site for AIH. YOU can be an inspiration and blessing for many people. Please check it out.

    Also, I have had a biopsy. I have stage 1 fibrosis. im not sure what that means... do you? Did you have any scaring? Hows your liver today? How long did you take medication before it went into remission?
    mccindy replied to victoria417's response:
    I will visit the website Victoria.

    I do have some scarring. My liver is fine. I was probably on medication for 3 years. U of Michigan felt I should be weaned off prednisone first, but my doctor and I felt the Imuran would be best to wean off first.

    When I finally was off both meds I started pushing my bloodwork back by a few weeks, and then a couple of months until I was only going a few times a year. Finally I am going only once a year for bloodwork...with my doctor's approval.

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