The Liver

The liver is a vital organ and has a wide range of functions including detoxification, protein synthesis, and production of bio-chemicals necessary for digestion.

The liver is necessary for survival; there is currently no way to compensate for the absence of liver function in the long term, although new liver dialysis techniques can be used in the short term.

This gland 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 lipids.

The liver’s highly specialized tissues regulate a wide variety of high-volume biochemical reactions, including the synthesis and breakdown of small and complex molecules, many of which are necessary for normal vital functions.

The liver helps the body digest food, absorb nutrients, and eliminate toxic substances. Without this abdominal organ you wouldn’t able to live.

 

Signs of liver damage include

Exhaustion
Chronic fatigue, muscle and mental weakness, memory loss, and even confusion, and eventually coma are common when a damaged liver progresses to liver failure.

 

Fluid Retention
Fluid is also typically retained in the legs, ankles, and feet, a condition referred to as Oedema, which is characterized by a seriously damaged liver. When you press down on the swollen areas of skin, you will notice that the imprint will remain for a few seconds after the finger is lifted.

 

Loss of Appetite
Liver damage can progress into liver failure, without medical attention this can cause loss of appetite that results in severe weight loss.

In cases where patients are severely malnourished, nutrients must be given intravenously.

 

Nausea
Digestive issues, including indigestion and acid reflux can rear its ugly head with liver damage, and even lead to vomiting attacks.

 

Stool Changes
With liver damage often come several changes in bowel movement, for instance, you might notice periods of constipation, irritable bowel syndrome, or stool may turn pale in color, tar-colored, or contain traces of blood.

 

Irritated Skin
Itchy skin that doesn’t seem to go away and develops into a flaky rash is another sign of liver damage as the body’s lack of fluid flow manifests on the surface of the skin in thick, flaky, itchy patches of skin.

Urine Changes
Urine may become dark yellow in color due to increased levels of bilirubin in the body’s bloodstream, which the damaged liver is unable to eliminate via excretion through the kidneys.

 

Abdominal Tenderness
Abdominal pain, particularly in the upper right corner of the abdomen, or to the lower right portion of the rib cage, is a telling sign of liver damage.

 

Jaundice
Discolored skin and eyes that take on a yellowish hue is symptomatic of liver damage. This yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes results as bilirubin (a bile pigment) builds-up in the blood and is unable to be eliminated as waste from the body

 

Swollen Abdomen
Cirrhosis, the serious progression of liver disease, causes fluid build-up in the abdomen (a condition referred to as Ascites), as levels of albumin and proteins in the blood and fluid are retained. This may actually make the patient appear pregnant

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