Hepatology is a branch of medicine which focuses on the liver, pancreas and biliary tree as well as their related disorders. Traditionally, the discipline was considered as a sub-field of gastroenterology; nevertheless, over the year, it has become a unique subject due to the increase in the number of hepatologists.
Hepatologists usually focus on diseases such as viral hepatitis or alcohol-related disorders, as well as liver cancers and hepatitis B and C.
Furthermore, hepatologists deal with liver diseases provoked by over-consumption of alcohol, drug overdose, gastrointestinal bleeding, liver transplantation, genetic and metabolic liver diseases, drug metabolism and pancreatitis.
Hepatologists usually look after all the patients that are referred by a doctor.
In addition, some of the procedures hepatologists are required to perform include the endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography, transhepatic pancreatic-cholangiography and transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt.
The origins of the discipline relate to ancient Egypt; however, hepatology has a unique discipline during the XX century.
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