Liver disease is any disturbance of liver function that may cause illness. The liver is responsible for many essential functions within the body and should it become injured or diseased, the loss of those functions may cause significant damage to the body. Also, liver disease is referred to as hepatic disease.
Liver disease is a broad term that can cover all the potential problems that cause your liver to fail in performing its assigned functions. More than 75% or about 3 quarters of liver tissue needs to be affected before a reduction in function occurs.
1. Abdominal Tenderness
Abdominal pain, in particular the upper right corner of the abdomen, or to the lower right portion of the rib cage, is a symptom of liver damage. This pain may or may not be accompanied by swelling in the ascites or abdomen.
Patients usually characterize this as a persistent stabbing or throbbing pain which can only be temporarily relieved by medications. Improper use of medications can be part of the reason that you are experiencing abdominal pain symptoms.
Remember that liver disease can be caused by long-term overuse of certain over-the-counter prescription medications, including narcotic-acetaminophen and acetaminophen combinations. These medications may cause upset stomach as a side effect, and their damaging attributes can be increased, if you drink alcohol while using them. The stomach upset side effects can snowball over the long term as liver damage appears. Eventually, this pain will become severe and patients eek medical attention.
A damaged liver produces few of the proteins that are necessary for blood clotting. This means you may bleed and bruise more easily.
Some conditions cause easier bruising, as well. But if you have ever wondered on the reason why you bruise so easily? This could be a sign of liver damage, rheumatoid arthritis or other conditions. Make sure be to check with your doctor if you notice unusual bruising.
Edema is a fancy, medical way of characterizing a condition in which an excess of liquid collects in the various tissues and cavities of the body – or to put it simply, swelling.
When this swelling or edema (for all the healthcare professionals reading) is the result of liver damage, it most commonly accumulates in the abdominal cavity, known as ascites and in the legs, also known as cirrhosis.
4. Irritated Skin
Itchy skin that develops into a flaky rash is another 0ign of serious liver damage. Skin irritations result from your body’s lack of fluid flow, which most commonly manifests on the surface of the skin in flaky, thick and itchy patches.
Liver disease can also cause other skin problems, including a generalized yellowing of the mucus membranes (jaundice) and skin, changes in skin tone and color and reddened of the feet or hands. These changes can result in unusually light or unusually dark patches of skin in localized areas.
In some cases, some people experience the appearance of veins in their skin. If any of these symptoms appear, and if they are accompanied by itching, you should consult your doctor.
Digestive issues, including acid reflux and indigestion, can rear its ugly head with liver damage, and can even lead to vomiting attacks. Persistent and unexplained vomiting is known to be one of the definitive clues that an a person may be suffering from liver problems.
When vomiting occurs, minus the presence of any intestinal or stomach tract issues, it is considered a serious medical problem and its cause should be studied thoroughly.
In people suffering from liver damage, persistent feelings of nausea arise from the body’s diminished ability to eliminate and process toxins, as well as changes in digestion and metabolism.
Some individuals mistake the root cause of the nausea, or ignore it altogether as it is usually not considered to be a serious medical problem. If you notice any persistent changes in your health, no matter how small it may seem, consult your doctor to find out what the problem is.
Fatigue is the most frequently experienced symptom in individuals who suffer of liver damage and disease. It is very important to note that a feeling of unwanted tiredness and fatigue can manifest itself not just physically, but mentally as well; and most often both.
While fatigue is a common enough symptom of liver damage, it is a varied symptom linked with many ailments, including heart disease, diabetes and thyroid disease. So, if you experienced it frequently, it is essential to speak to your health-care professional.
7. Yellow Skin or Eyes (Jaundice)
Your body breaks down old blood cells, and one of its byproduct is a yellowish compound called bilirubin. While a healthy liver has no problem removing bilirubin, a diseased liver allows bilirubin to build-up in your blood. This can turn your skin and eyes yellow.
This is what is known as jaundice. Light feces and dark urine are also signs of jaundice.