The liver is a major and important organ in the body. It is also the largest solid organ in the body whose function is to regulate metabolic processes of the body including detoxification.
It is located on the upper right side of the abdomen and partially covered by the ribs.k
Because of the nature of of its functions, it is usually vulnerable to several types of disorders and diseases. Examples of diseases that affect the liver include fatty liver disease, hepatitis, alcoholic liver disease and cirrhosis of the liver.
Each of these diseases can cause specific symptoms. However, in the early stages of development, they all affect the liver in a similar way.
To avoid these diseases and other health complications, you have to get yourself familiar with the early signs of liver damage and how to quickly restore proper function. Below are 5 common signs that show that your liver might be damaged:
1. Low appetite
One of the functions of the liver is to produce bile. Bile is a product of enzymatic breakdown of some substances in the body and it is what gives the faeces, its characteristic colour. It helps in the break down of the food we eat and more specifically involved in the emulsification of fats.
If the function of the liver is impaired, bile production is reduced, which leads to a poor metabolism and thus to a feeling of satiety.
2. The colour of your urine changes
If the colour of your urine changes even though you drink enough water, you may have liver problems. This is because the kidneys produce bilirubin levels in the bloodstream, which may be too high for the liver to remove. The dark colour of the urine can also be the result of antibiotic therapy, taking vitamin B supplements or dehydration.
3. Your body retains more fluid
Be cause of the nature of the liver' s work, fluid is retained in the limbs and abdominal cavity. Retention of fluid in the limbs like the hands and legs is called edema. Retention of fluid in the abdominal cavity is called ascites
The fluid retention is usually caused by poor flow of blood which can cause damage to the blood vessels that are within the liver. Pressure builds up within this vessels especially within the hepatic portal vein. It supplies blood to the liver from the small intestine. This pressure causes fluid to accumulate within the cavities around.
4. You experience more than usual flatulence
Because of the excessive build up of fluids in the abdominal cavity as outlined above. Your body may begin to experience bloating which is build up of gas in the stomach and intestines. This build up can be agonising and very embarrassing because you begin to release excess gas (flatulence).
5. Jaundice might occur
When you realise that the white matter of your eyes begin to turn yellow or you experience a yellowing of your skin. This can be really frightening. However, there is a solid explanation: it is called jaundice. Jaundice is caused by high levels of bilirubin in the body, a yellowish pigment that is excreted by the liver. If you notice the discolouration, it could be caused by many different signs of liver damage, from cirrhosis to hepatitis B.
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