Hepatology is the medical specialty dealing with the diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the liver and its associated organs such as the gall bladder and pancreas, as well as the structures that connect them. It is a branch of internal medicine. Once merely a sub-specialty of gastroenterology, it is now considered a medical specialty in its own right. The concept of diseases specific to the liver dates back to antiquity, and Hippocrates wrote about liver diseases in 400 B.C.E.
The bulk of hepatology practice deals with the effects of hepatitis and alcohol. Some other of the more common conditions within this specialty are acetaminophen overdose, associated bleeding from liver damage, abnormal liver enzyme test results, jaundice, swelling of the abdomen from fluid accumulation, cirrhosis, diagnostic use of ERCP, hemochromatosis and related conditions, liver transplant monitoring, pancreatitis and any cancer of the organs.