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Liver Patients in Wales Among the Least Satisfied with Their Medical Care in the UK


Nearly 20% of patients with liver disease in Wales were very unsatisfied with their medical care, a survey carried out by leading liver charity, the British Liver Trust, reveals.

The only region in the UK with lower satisfaction rates was Yorkshire and Humber, where 23% were very unsatisfied.

The largest ever UK survey of over 2,000 liver patients also showed that in Wales:

  • 23% of people said their condition was dismissed as nothing to worry about when they were first seen by a medical professional.
  • Nearly 20% of people said they were diagnosed late, by which time there were very few treatment options and the disease had progressed.
  • Just over half of liver disease patients had no signs or symptoms of a liver problem before diagnosis.

The survey also showed that in the UK:

  • A third of patients were diagnosed after being tested for another condition
  • Tiredness, abdominal pain and itching were the most common symptoms experienced by half of respondents
  • More than half felt they were given not enough or no information upon diagnosis
  • 22% of patients waited more than six months before being referred to a specialist

Experts are warning that late diagnosis of liver disease is causing a liver disease crisis across the UK, denying many of these people the chance of getting the best possible treatment. Evidence shows the earlier a patient is diagnosed, the greater their chance of survival.

Professor Stephen Ryder, Consultant at Nottingham University NHS Trust said,

“We need to be diagnosing people with liver disease at a much earlier stage in primary care. We have equipped GPs with a very poor test for diagnosing liver disease – Liver Function Tests (liver enzymes).

“Repeat testing of liver enzymes just wastes NHS money and does not provide early diagnosis. We now have excellent tests for liver scarring, the process which matters in the liver, and those tests should now be universal in primary care.”

Over 14,000 people will die from liver disease this year – more than 40 people a day. It is the third biggest cause of premature mortality and it’s the only major disease increasing year on year.

Pamela Healy, Chief Executive, British Liver Trust said,

“The UK is facing a liver disease crisis. Liver problems often develop silently as patients do not tend to experience symptoms until the disease has progressed. This survey highlights the shocking number of people who are diagnosed late and who do not feel they are receiving the care they need.

“The survey also highlights the need to help people understand how to reduce their risk of liver damage to address the increase in deaths from liver disease. Although the liver is remarkably resilient, if left too late damage is often irreversible.”

The British Liver Trust is the largest UK charity for all adults with liver disease. Their national awareness campaign, Love Your Liver, aims to raise awareness of the risk factors for liver disease and includes a roadshow that stops in locations across the UK offering free liver screening and scanning. The Love Your Liver campaign focuses on three simple steps to Love Your Liver back to health:

• Drink within recommended limits and have three consecutive days off alcohol every week
• Maintain a healthy weight by eating well and taking more exercise
• Know the risk factors for viral hepatitis and get tested or vaccinated if at risk


Over the past 6 years, Rachel has been working specifically within the digital marketing space and has worked with some of the country’s top brands. During this time, Rachel was a key attribute to the success of our sister product, Recruitment Buzz, which has firmly established itself as one of the leading publications within the Recruitment sector. Drawing on her knowledge and experience, Rachel has developed a genuine understanding of how content can engage and compel an audience.

Having a passion for travel and culture, Rachel left her hometown of Cardiff to pursue studies and travel and after several years away, Rachel returned to Cardiff and firmly established herself within the development of Business News Wales. Rachel is now responsible for every aspect of web management, marketing and overall production of the Business News Wales brand.

Having learnt some invaluable skills within the marketing industry, Rachel is often called upon for her skills and knowledge of WordPress, HTML, email marketing software, Photoshop design and social media tools.


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