The alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency primarily affects the liver and the lungs. These two vital organs suffer most of the damage caused by the faulty genes that lead to the production of misshaped alpha-1 antitrypsin or AAT. if treatment is not commenced and the condition is severe, it can lead to conditions like liver cancer, liver cirrhosis, and emphysema. Specific risk facts associated with alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency are:
Damage to the cells of the lungs leads to bronchiectasis and even damages the air sacs.
Liver damage like cirrhosis can lead to multiple organ failures. Even with timely treatment, damage to other organs cannot be completely avoided. The person is also more susceptible to infections.
People suffering from alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency can develop skin conditions like panniculitis wherein pus-filled lumps develop over the skin and often burst. This condition is very rare though.