The liver is one of the largest and most important organs in the body; therefore, it is responsible for ridding the body of harmful chemical substances and waste. Asides this very important responsibility, the liver also performs the function of making enzymes and bile which aids in the digestion of food. One fact that always fascinates me about the liver is that it is the only organ in the body that is capable of repairing or regenerating damaged cells. Notwithstanding, complications can arise from regeneration leading to a development of scar tissues which eventually affects the liver.
Although liver diseases can be hereditary, it can also be as a result of intake of harmful chemical substances like alcohol or may be the resultant effect of other sicknesses like cirrhosis.
Here are 6 symptoms of liver disease:
This symptom is medically referred to as Ascites, giving the patient suffering from such liver disease the appearance of a pregnant woman. A swollen abdomen is often time the result of a seriously damaged liver which is no longer capable of removing toxic fluids from the body. This symptom is also quickly followed by swollen ankles as a result of accumulated fluids in the body.
Another telling symptom of liver disease is a jaundiced skin and eye. This is recognizable by the discoloration of the skin and eyes from its original color to a yellowish hue. This discoloration usually occurs because the liver is no longer able to eliminate a bile pigment called bilirubin from the body. In addition, jaundice can also lead to a dark colored urine and light colored stool. Although this jaundice can be effectively treated, doctors must ensure that the underlying cause of this symptom is fully addressed.
Abdominal pain is another telling symptom of liver infection. Sometimes, this abdominal pain may be accompanied by swelling, while other times they may not. This abdominal pain is sharp and often time very excruciating. Nonetheless, liver diseases can also be triggered by the long use of certain medication, especially over the counter drugs like acetaminophen and narcotic-acetaminophen. Consequently, people are advised to go for a regular check-up and testing and only ingest drugs prescribed by their doctors.
Changes in the color of urine to dark yellow is another glaring sign of liver disease and this happens because of the liver's inability to excrete a toxic waste known as bilirubin. It is this excessive amount of bilirubin in the blood stream that causes the changes in the color of urine as well as skin and eye. Although dark urine can be caused by other factors, however, if it happens continuously, I suggest you see a physician.
Liver disease is usually recognizable when a person develops an itchy skin which simply does not go away. This itchiness and dryness of the skin are because of the body's lack of fluid. Liver infection also brings other myriads of skin problems such as yellowing of the skin as a result of excess bilirubin in the blood stream.
Sharp and uncontrollable bowel changes are another telltale sign of liver infection. These changes could be either in the form of constipation or changes in stool color. While it is natural for the human system to experience constipation, constipation that has become chronic shouldn’t be taken with a pinch of salt.