Doctor insights on:
Signs And Symptoms Of Liver Damage
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This organ plays a major role in metabolism and has a number of functions in the body, including glycogen storage, decomposition of red blood cells, plasma protein synthesis, hormone production, and detoxification. It lies below the diaphragm in the abdominal-pelvic region of the abdomen. It produces bile, an alkaline compound which aids in digestion via the emulsification of ...Read more
End-stage vs. Acute: In esld (end-stage liver disease), much of liver has been replaced by scarring & may not repair itself. Has higher risk of liver cancer. If compensated, asymptomatic; get symptoms if progressive disease +/- alcohol. In acute liver disease however, common complaints include: jaundice (yellow eyes, skin; dark urine, light stool), itching, liver enlargement & RUQ pain, ascites, fluid build-up, more. ...Read more
Alcohol: Effects depend on the amount consumed. Small to moderate consumption causes reduced risks of blood clots , stone formation , diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis. Large consumption causes impaired memory & vision, anemia, cardiomyopathy, hepatitis, cancer mouth/esophagus, gastritis, pancreatitis, diabetes type 2, depression, anxiety, psychosis, insomnia, panic, cravings. ...Read more
I've been on pain medication for a few years now, how long does it take for liver damage to set in? Are there symptoms of liver damage to look for?
After years of being diagnosed with Hepatitis A, my husband still has elevated ALT and AST. What does this mean? He has no symptoms of liver damage.
Not hepatitis A: Hepatitis A doesn't go chronic like this. Hubby has elevated labs from some other cause. Test after 2 weeks off alcohol & all meds. If still high, a competent physician will rule out chronic hepatitis B and C, Wilson's, hemochromatosis, autoimmune hepatitis & maybe more. Sometimes this is genetic, and/or his body's way of asking for a fitness-focused lifestyle. ...Read more
All show late: Bloodwork shows liver injury much earlier than physical signs, which can include: dry / rough skin; yellow coloration (jaundice); altered mental status; prominent blood vessels around belly button; swollen neck veins; easy bruising/bleeding; abdomen distension (ascites); stool changes (color / consistency); day/night sleep reversal... ...Read more
Labs / Biopsy: Biopsy is the gold standard to evaluate liver damage. This test is not done on everyone. Liver function tests can let a doctor know if there is ongoing inflammation of the liver. There are different tests like Fibrospect that is a less invasive than a liver biopsy that can help. All of this has to be put in context with your medical conditions/ history, etc.. and discussed with your doctor. ...Read more
Can vary: Cirrhosis=stage 4 scarring of the liver. Complications like fluid build up in your abdominal cavity (ascites), confusion (hepatic encephalopathy), and liver cancer (hcc) as well as easy bruising, fatigue and jaundice on occasion (elevated bilirubin) can occur. You need to be followed by a liver doctor who can manage and control the above signs/symptoms once they develop (occur at different rates. ...Read more
Blood tests: You definitely want to catch damage before there are any signs of damage. Thus anyone prescribing medication that can be harmful to the liver will recommend regular blood testing to watch for any liver troubles. ...Read more
Can be subtle: The liver can suffer a lot of damage before it becomes apparent that something is wrong, which is why it is so important to be screened for common causes, like hepatitis b and c, while you feel normal. Often early symptoms are fatigue and just not feeling well. Later symptoms of advanced cirrhosis (severe scarring) include easy bleeding, swelling, yellow skin or eyes, breasts in men, etc. ...Read more
LFT's: Elevated liver function tests (alt, ast and ggt). Just because medications are started that are cleared through the liver (protease inhibitors)'doesn't necessarily mean there will be dysfunction. Is important to try and minimize all meds that get cleared through the liver (statins for example if possible). Avoiding alcohol and tylenol (acetaminophen) is very important. ...Read more
Been drinking 60-70 units a week since end of october 2015, is liver damage likely or unlikely? I have no symptoms and cut down to 20 units a week
Taking Tylenol regularity but never more than the recommended dose for last few weeks.Social drinker.I'm worried about l have liver damage. Symptoms?
See your doctor.: Initially, there are no symptoms to the kind of damage that Tylenol can do to the liver. Although you are likely to have not done any damage to the liver if you followed the directions, it would be prudent to get some blood drawn to be sure. It is a simple blood test. If you are worried, I would try to limit Tylenol and avoid alcohol until you have the blood test. Good luck. ...Read more
My dad drinks almost everyday, his face is all swollen up today-- is this a sign of liver damage?
Too much fluid: No, it's a sign that he has too much fluid in his body. If he quits drinking, his body will get rid of it naturally. If you are worried he may have a drinking problem, talk to somebody you feel is safe. ...Read more
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