January 6, 2014
Teenagers across the UK are being treated for liver disease usually associated with a decade or more of heavy drinking.
Two 17-year-olds, an 18-year-old and two 19-year-olds have been treated for alcohol-related liver disease in UK hospitals over the last three years.
Cirrhosis of the liver is normally associated with binge drinking for ten years or more, but experts have suggested it is now occurring over a shorter period.
According to information obtained by The Sunday Times, an 18 and a 19-year-old have both been treated for alcohol-related liver disease at University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust.
The two 17-year-olds, meanwhile, were treated at St James’s University Hospital in Leeds and Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge.
The second 19-year-old was treated at Royal Free Hospital in North London.
The paper also reported that at least one patient in their 20s with the condition received a transplant.
A doctor from Addenbrooke’s, Dr Alexander Gimson, told the paper the ‘portentous’ figures were in line with research showing that the age at which people suffer and die from alcohol-related liver disease is getting younger.