Primary Biliary Cholangitis Treatment

Primary Biliary Cholangitis Treatment

If you suspect that you may have PBC, you may wonder what treatment options are available. Our specialists at NewYork-Presbyterian Medical Center include gastroenterologists, liver surgeons, and physician assistants. They work together to diagnose and treat PBC and prevent complications.


Primary Biliary Cholangitis is a chronic disease that affects the bile ducts. The most common symptoms of this disease are fatigue and intense itching, also known as pruritus. While the cause of the itching is not fully understood, it is thought to be caused by the inability of the liver to process bile. However, pruritus does not necessarily mean that the liver has been damaged. The disease usually causes a gradual reduction in activities of daily living. It can also result in the formation of jaundice.

As the liver ducts become blocked or inflamed, bile cannot drain properly into the bloodstream. This results in a buildup of bile in the liver, which prevents it from breaking down fats and removing waste products from the body. This buildup can harm the liver, causing it to shut down and eventually lead to liver failure.


Primary biliary cholangitis is an autoimmune disorder in which the body attacks its bile ducts. The damaged ducts become scarred and swollen and do not function properly. This results in an accumulation of bile fluid in the liver, causing damage.

Diagnosis of primary biliary cholangitis disease requires a series of tests and examinations. The first step is to perform a blood test that detects abnormal liver enzyme levels. Other tests include a physical exam and medical history. Sometimes a liver biopsy is performed to confirm the diagnosis.


Primary biliary cholangitis (PBC) is an autoimmune disease that affects the biliary tract. It usually strikes women in their fifth or sixth decade of life and is characterized by fatigue, pruritus, and upper abdominal discomfort. It is often diagnosed through a physical exam and blood test that detects elevated liver enzymes. A liver biopsy may be necessary to confirm the diagnosis in rare cases.

The most effective treatment for PBC is based on understanding the disease's pathophysiology. Initially, the disease was referred to as primary biliary cirrhosis, but more recent research has revealed a more accurate diagnosis and an improved prognosis. There are several options for treating PBC, and the disease's progression can be significantly delayed with appropriate treatment.

Imaging tests

Primary biliary cholangitis (PBC) is a condition in which the bile ducts in the liver are not working correctly or are blocked. These ducts are responsible for breaking down fats and absorbing vitamins into the blood. If the ducts become blocked or if they are damaged, too much bile can build up and lead to scarring. The earlier you are diagnosed with the condition, your treatment options will be better.

Imaging tests for primary biliary cholangiopancreas include liver enzyme tests and an ultrasound. These tests will reveal abnormal levels of certain liver enzymes. If the enzyme alkaline phosphatase is elevated, you may have primary biliary cholangitis.