symptoms of an inflamed liver

Symptoms of an Inflamed Liver – Causes, Diagnosis, Treatment & Diet

The liver is the largest internal organ of our body and is located in the upper right part of the abdominal area. This organ has an important purpose in some metabolic processes of the body. It organizes and releases bile that absorbs fats in the intestine, breaks down important body nutrients, manufactures enzymes and proteins, gets rid of toxins and aids in body detoxification, and a lot more functions are done by the liver. An inflamed liver is a problem that obviously means that the liver is unhealthy. In this article, we will get to know the symptoms of an inflamed liver, causes, diagnosis, treatment, and diet.

Inflamed Liver Symptoms

When the liver inflammation occurs for less than 6 months it is called an acute condition while if it persists for more than 6 months it is now called a chronic condition. The liver has a unique ability to work normally even when it is damaged. As a result, in the very first stage, the patient is asymptomatic. They do not experience any pain for the liver inflammation. The following are some of the symptoms of the inflamed liver:

  • A slight and localized pain in the upper right part of the abdominal cavity
  • With more swelling, a person can sense the inflammation at the lower right part of the rib cage and it is painful when touched
  •  A persistent feeling of fullness that makes plenty of discomfort.
  • Lack of appetite
  • Painful sensation in the muscles and joints that continue for some weeks
  • Unexplained loss of weight

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In the chronic stage, the following symptoms of liver inflammation can be seen:

  • Jaundice or yellowish discoloration of skin and the white part of the eyes
  • Fever
  • Dark colored urine
  • Pain in the abdomen
  • Tenderness near the liver
  • Pain may extend up to the right shoulder
  • Bloating and flatulence especially after eating fatty or oily foods
  • Changes in the lipid levels
  •  Weakness
  • Tiredness
  • Sleepiness

Inflamed Liver Causes

When the liver experiences some type of injury or damage, eventually the liver cells will be inflamed. There are some things that can cause this. The following are the usual causes of the inflamed liver:

  • Viral Attack on the Liver

This is one of the leading causes of the inflamed liver. When the liver is inflamed because of a viral infection, it is called hepatitis. There are several kinds of hepatitis virus. Hepatitis A, B, and C are the most usual virus that causes inflamed liver.

  • Alcohol

Alcoholic hepatitis is another cause of inflamed liver. This targets people who are heavy alcohol drinkers for a long time. The metabolite of alcohol has a dangerous effect on the liver.

  • Side Effects of Some Drugs

The inflamed liver can also be brought about by the side effects of some medications. It can occur for the reason that drugs, as well as illegal drugs, are metabolized in the liver. The degree of liver damage brought about by these medications will be based on the dosage and the duration of the drug intake.

  • Autoimmune Diseases

Those who have an autoimmune problem may also have liver inflammation. This can happen if the immune system destroys the liver cells.

  • Other Causes

The other factors that can cause inflamed liver are chemical exposure, bacterial infections, an unhealthy diet, etc.

Inflamed Liver Diagnosis

  • Liver Biopsy

Under local anesthesia, a needle is inserted in the lower area of the right chest and small liver tissue is taken. The sample will be examined under a microscope.

  • Elevated Liver Enzymes

An increased level of liver enzymes may signify liver inflammation or liver damage. The inflamed liver releases an increased number of certain enzymes into the blood circulation that resulted in increased liver enzymes seen on the blood tests.

The most usually seen elevated liver enzymes are:

  • Alanine transaminase (ALT)
  • Aspartate transaminase (AST)

An increased amount of liver enzymes may be found during a routine blood examination. In usual situations, liver enzymes are merely slightly and briefly elevated. For the majority of the time, elevated liver enzymes do not signify chronic and severe liver damage.

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Inflamed Liver Treatment

The treatment for the inflamed liver will be based on the degree of damage to the liver. This can be identified with the aid of liver function tests. There is no drug to treat acute viral hepatitis. A person must slow down his or her activities and change his or her diet to help the liver regenerate on its own.

Antiviral drugs are given for the management of chronic viral hepatitis like hepatitis B and C. Milk thistle is a famous herbal tonic, which is used to stop viral infection. It also encourages the growth of new liver cells and therefore replaces the cells that are damaged. It also stops toxins from entering the healthy liver cells. If the inflamed liver is brought about by a medication that drug must be discontinued or changed after the doctor’s consultation.

The inflamed liver could be a severe problem if proper treatment is not given on time. If the liver continues to be inflamed for a long time, it can result in the death of liver cells and will result in liver scarring. Scarred liver cells will not work normally and will only burden the healthy liver cells. Furthermore, an increased number of scarred liver cells can lead to cirrhosis, permanent liver damage.

Inflamed Liver Diet

The diet has to be a healthy and balanced diet and intake of fatty and processed foods should be avoided. A person must be very careful with his or her caloric consumption and it should not be beyond 3000 calories daily. More fruits and vegetables should be eaten daily. The patient should only eat freshly cooked food. He or she should also drink plenty of water. Drinking alcohol must completely stop.

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