Alcohol and the Liver: The Return of the Prodigal Son

Ann Hepatol. 2019 Jan-Feb;18(1):6-10. doi: 10.5604/01.3001.0012.7854.


With the discovery of direct-acting antivirals and the prospective of viral hepatitis becoming curable, alcohol liver disease (ALD) is back to primetime. In the last 20 years, there have been many advances in the understanding of the biology, the psychology and the social and environmental factors associated with this long-known medical problem. Recent information about regional, ethnic, cultural and genetic factors seem to be relevant for the Latin American (LA) population. New approaches based on the new concepts and current information will render better results in the overall management of patients with this problem. Considering alcohol use disorder and ALD as part of the same entity managing it in a multidisciplinary approach seems to be best way to deal with this disease.

Keywords: Alcohol liver disease; Alcohol use disorder; Cirrhosis; Hispanic.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Alcoholism / complications*
  • Alcoholism / epidemiology
  • Ethanol / adverse effects*
  • Global Health
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Liver / drug effects*
  • Liver Diseases, Alcoholic / epidemiology*
  • Liver Diseases, Alcoholic / etiology
  • Risk Assessment*


  • Ethanol