What Is Autoimmune Hepatitis?
Autoimmune hepatitis (AIH) is a type of liver inflammation. It occurs when your body's own immune system attacks the liver, causing swelling and damage.
Researchers can't say for sure how many people have AIH. But it's more common in girls and women.
People who have AIH sometimes have other autoimmune diseases too, such as scleroderma or type 1 diabetes.
Types of autoimmune hepatitis
There are two types of AIH:
- Type 1, or classic: The most common form of AIH, affecting people of any age or gender.
- Type 2: The rarer form of AIH, mostly affecting children (commonly girls).
Autoimmune hepatitis causes
Doctors don't always know why AIH starts.
Sometimes, parents pass genes with mutations, or changes, to their children. Researchers suspect that some environmental factors might cause the immune system to attack the liver in people with these gene changes.
Some infections or medicines might trigger AIH.
Viruses might also play a role.
Autoimmune hepatitis risk factors and complications
Your liver helps you digest food and removes harmful toxins from your blood. AIH damages your liver and changes how it works.
If you or a family member have an autoimmune disease, you might be at higher risk for AIH.
If you have AIH, you're at higher risk for health problems like:
Why Choose the Center for Liver Disease for Autoimmune Hepatitis Care?
Our liver doctors, or hepatologists, are experts in treating complex liver diseases. We're always researching new treatments and therapies for people with autoimmune AIH.
Our doctors work with you to design a treatment plan to help keep you healthy.