General aspects of the treatment of alcoholic hepatitis

World J Hepatol. 2011 May 27;3(5):125-9. doi: 10.4254/wjh.v3.i5.125.


General measures for treating patients with alcoholic hepatitis (AH) are similar irrespective of the disease severity. Alcohol abstinence is the cornerstone of treatment and can be achieved with appropriate social support, Alcoholics Anonymous and sometimes pharmacological therapy. Alcohol withdrawal should be anticipated and treatment initiated to prevent this complication. Treatment for complications of cirrhosis should be as for any other patient with cirrhosis. AH patients are particularly prone to infections and malnutrition. These should be identified and treated appropriately using broad spectrum antibiotics and nutritional support respectively.

Keywords: Alcohol abstinence; Alcohol withdrawal; Alcoholic hepatitis; Complications of cirrhosis; Malnutrition; Nutritional support; Treatment.