Liver Disease In Chicago, IL
The liver serves many important purposes within the body. It helps metabolize iron, glucose and cholesterol. It cleans our blood, stores energy, and assists in food digestion. It also aids in the production of protein and helps prevent blood clotting. Your liver has a lot of responsibility! Considering the many roles the liver plays in maintaining a properly functioning body, an unhealthy liver can result in a variety of health issues.
Liver disease can be inherited or can be caused by a variety of factors that damage the liver, such as viruses, alcohol use and obesity. Fatty liver and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), metabolic associated liver disease, hepatitis, abnormal liver enzymes can also contribute to liver disease.
If fat has developed in your liver, it generally won’t function as well as it should. At Summit Digestive and Liver Disease Specialists, we provide a specialized medical treatment for fatty liver disease to improve the function of your liver and your overall health. We also recommend staying up to date with vaccinations to protect your liver from hepatitis A and B, which are viruses that affect liver health and function.
Signs of Liver Disease
Liver disease, also known as hepatic disease, essentially refers to the liver’s failure to properly carry out its usual functions. The liver is quite resilient and can still function if half of it is damaged or diseased. When more than three-quarters of the liver tissue is affected, it is no longer able to function properly.
There are several symptoms of liver disease that are an indication the liver is not functioning properly. These symptoms include:
- Loss of Appetite
- Swollen Abdomen
- Mental Confusion or Disorientation
There are several different causes of liver disease. Excessive long-term alcohol consumption can lead to both cirrhosis and liver disease. Hepatitis B and hepatitis C can both also cause liver disease, as can the Epstein Barr virus. Other potential causes of liver disease include malnutrition, excessive iron intake and ingesting poisonous wild mushrooms. Some medications when taken in excess, such as acetaminophen, can also lead to liver disease and even complete liver failure.
A liver that is not functioning properly can be life-threatening and requires immediate medical treatment. If left untreated, liver disease can lead to complete liver failure. It is critical to receive treatment during the early onset of liver disease before the condition requires emergency care.
Liver disease can be treated. Several treatment options are available, dependent on the cause of the liver disease.