This is a general term for a disease that alters a person’s brain function and mental state. Some types of encephalopathy include:
- Glycine encephalopathy—caused by a metabolic disorder (how the cells make energy)
—caused by liver disease
—caused by reduced oxygen to brain
- Static encephalopathy—permanent brain damage
- Uremic encephalopathy—caused by toxins remaining in the body
- Wernicke’s encephalopathy—caused by a thiamine deficiency, usually due to alcoholism
- Hashimoto’s encephalopathy—an autoimmune disorder (when your immune system attacks your body’s cells)
Hypertensive encephalopathy—caused by very
high blood pressure
- Toxic-Metabolic encephalopathy—a general term to describe encephalopathies caused by infections, toxins, or organ failure
Treating the cause can reverse symptoms. But, some forms of may result in lasting changes in the brain. If brain injury is severe and cannot be reversed, the disease can be fatal.
The doctor will try to stop or reverse the underlying condition. Treatment options include:
Depending on the cause, your doctor may prescribe medicines. For example, if the cause is a toxin in the body, your doctor may prescribe medicines to lower the levels of the toxin.
Vitamins or supplements may also be given. In some cases, these may help prevent damage to the brain.
Your doctor may suggest changes to your diet. For example, if you have liver damage, you may need to limit how much protein you eat.
and life support may be needed, especially in the case of coma.
In some cases, you may need an organ transplant or dialysis. With
, toxins are removed from the blood through a filtering process.