The liver is the largest internal organ, and surprisingly powerful. Not only does it protect all your tissues from damage by filtering out toxins from your bloodstream, but it also can repair its own damaged tissue.
This means that, given the right time and care, liver tissue can be regenerate and your body’s filtration system can continue to function efficiently. However, some liver conditions leave permanent damage, and in these cases, early diagnosis and swift treatment can mean the difference between an uncomfortable (but treatable) illness and a life-threatening emergency. Sequel to Warning Signs Of Unhealthy Liver, here are more signs your liver may be failing.
Bruising: A damaged liver produces fewer of the proteins necessary for blood clotting, which means you may bleed and bruise more easily. Certain conditions cause easier bruising, as well. If you’ve ever wondered, “Why do I bruise so easy?” it could be a sign of rheumatoid arthritis, liver damage, or other conditions be sure to check with your doctor if you notice unusual bruising.
Yellow eyes or skin (jaundice): When your body breaks down old blood cells, one of the by-products created is a yellowish compound called “bilirubin.” While a healthy liver has no problem disposing of bilirubin, a diseased liver allows bilirubin to build up in your blood, which can turn your skin and eyes yellow.
Joint pain: Arthritis-like joint pain, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, and loss of appetite are all interrelated symptoms of liver disease—particularly autoimmune hepatitis. Autoimmune hepatitis is a condition in which your immune system mistakenly attacks the cells and tissues of your liver, and it’s more common in women than men, according to the National Institutes of Health.
Loss of Appetite: Nausea, a disinterest in food, and weight loss are some early symptoms of liver problems. In fact, the initial stages of hepatitis often bring flu-like symptoms, including digestive discomfort. As liver damage progresses, more pronounced symptoms may appear. You may start to feel pain in certain areas, and you might see some startling changes in appearance.
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. This pain may or may not be accompanied by swelling in the abdomen, or ascites. Patients usually characterize it as a persistent throbbing or stabbing pain which can only be temporarily relieved by medications. In fact, improper use of medications can be part of the reason you’re experiencing abdominal pain symptoms.
Muscle wasting: An oversize belly or swollen ankles coupled with skinny, weak arms and legs could result from fluid imbalances caused by a diseased liver. This muscle wasting can also show up above your cheeks and around your temples but again, these are late-stage liver disease symptoms and not something you’re likely to notice one day out of the blue.
Personality Changes: Cognitive issues can develop when toxins accumulate in the blood and move to the brain. Confusion and problems with concentration are often the first signs of toxin overload, but they can lead to forgetfulness, changes in sleeping habits, and unresponsiveness.