Liver and its Damage
Liver can be affected by majority of health conditions. Infections, tumors, and cirrhosis are only some of them. This organ has huge power of regeneration and if the damage has not been extensive the liver can heal properly and fully reestablish its function. On the other hand, if the damage is permanent the healthy tissue of the liver is being replaced with the fibrous tissue, its function deteriorates and in terminal stage of the liver failure the only available treatment modality is liver transplantation.
Symptoms of Liver Disease
Some people suffer from liver diseases and are not even aware of their existence until the damage becomes serious and the symptoms and sings noticeable. The symptoms of the liver disease can be general and specific in case of certain liver disorders.
The leading symptom of almost every liver disease is jaundice. Its symptom is yellow colored skin and mucous membranes. Even the white of the eyes is yellow. Jaundice is actually a consequence of bilirubin accumulation. Jaundice may point to hepatitis, some tumors or the onset of the liver cirrhosis. Improper excretions of bilirubin also occurs with light color of stool and dark color of urine. Bilirubin can also accumulate in the skin. This leads to skin itchiness and rash.
Another symptom of liver disease is change in one's appetite. A person does not eat properly, he or she is not hungry and sometimes even some food may cause nausea. In hepatitis the loss of appetite is followed by weight loss. A person who is suffering from liver disease may also complain about bloating and stomach distension.
In almost all the cases of liver disease liver in enlarged. This enlargement can be also followed with enlargement of the spleen.
In advanced liver cirrhosis symptoms include ascites, which is accumulation of the fluid rich in proteins within abdominal cavity, and potential bleeding from esophageal varices. Loss of proteins leads to generalized edema.
Even headaches and dizziness can be a symptom of the liver disease. In terminal liver failure when toxins accumulate in the body symptoms of hepatic encelopathy develop. Seizures, confusion and coma are only some of the symptoms of hepatic encelopathy.
If there is a suspicion that a person in suffering from liver disease a doctor will perform certain blood tests. These tests will show the elevation of liver enzymes and increased level of bilirubin. Ultrasound of the abdomen is also helpful. Additional testing will discover the actual cause of the disease and the appropriate therapy may be rather helpful with elimination of the symptoms.