Melissa Benoit

How can CF cause liver disease?

People with CF can have elevated liver tests; however, CF-related liver disease is more than just having abnormal blood tests. Bile is naturally produced by the liver and is drained by the bile ducts into the gallbladder and small intestine where it helps with digestion. Liver tests can be elevated because of slow flow of bile. People with CF can develop problems with their liver but it can be difficult to recognize because many people do not have symptoms until late into the stage of disease. More than 10% of people with CF may get inflammation, blockage or stones of the cystic duct that connects the gallbladder to the liver. They can also get stones in the common bile duct. A subset of people may get significant liver disease due to thick bile building up in the ducts of the liver called intrahepatic bile ducts. In a small group of people this may progress to end stage liver disease called cirrhosis and may require a liver transplantation. Click here for more information.