What Are the Symptoms of Fatty Liver Disease?
The condition of liver disease is a somewhat common ailment characterized by a surplus of fat in a person’s liver cells. It may be the result of too much alcohol, or it may even show up in those who consume little to no alcohol. The condition may not present symptoms in the initial stages, but if left untreated, it might instigate severe liver troubles. At GastroArkansas, our gastrointestinal doctors provide high-quality care for fatty liver disease. Read on as we review the common symptoms of fatty liver disease, how it is diagnosed and managed, and how our gastrointestinal specialists in Little Rock, AR can assist.
Are there common signs and symptoms of fatty liver disease?
Fatty liver disease is generally grouped into two classifications: alcoholic fatty liver disease and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). Being able to recognize the beginning signs of fatty liver disease is vital for timely treatment and control. Signs and symptoms could include:
- Unintended loss of weight
- Liver swelling
- Exhaustion and feeling weak
- A high count of liver enzymes
- Pain in the upper right of the abdomen
If you are experiencing multiple of the listed signs or have additional issues with your liver health, we would like you to contact one of our gastroenterology locations in Little Rock, AR.
How is fatty liver disease detected?
The diagnosis of fatty liver disease generally involves your medical history, a physical examination, and specific tests. Our Little Rock, AR providers often start by discussing your symptoms and your lifestyle, followed by a physical exam to check for liver inflammation. Performing a blood test will let us evaluate liver enzymes and function, distinguishing irregularities that could indicate fatty liver disease. Imaging tests, like ultrasounds, CT scans, and MRIs, can help our doctors get a detailed look at the liver and see fat accumulation. For some, a biopsy of the liver could be required in order to determine your diagnosis. Early and accurate diagnosis of fatty liver disease is necessary for initiating proper care and treatment regimens.
What treatments are available for the disease?
Treating fatty liver disease generally involves managing the root issues and lifestyle components that contribute to the condition. This may include one or more of the approaches listed below:
- Regular monitoring: Routine visits help our GI doctors examine the progression of the disease so they can change your treatment regimen as necessary.
- Medicines: Certain medications might be prescribed to help control conditions that contribute to this condition, including diabetes and high cholesterol.
- Changes to your lifestyle: These might include drinking less alcohol, starting a healthy diet, following an exercise routine, and losing weight (if necessary).
A liver transplant might be suggested in extreme cases of fatty liver disease, like if a considerable amount of liver damage has ensued.
How might fatty liver disease alter one’s lifespan?
Life expectancy rates for fatty liver disease can be influenced by a range of factors, like the form of fatty liver disease and when it was detected. If you do not get medical help, this condition may progress to a more complicated liver problem, which could include liver cirrhosis or cancer. With appropriate treatment, however, a good number of patients are successful in managing their condition effectively and often continue to experience a typical lifespan.
Access care for fatty liver disease in Little Rock, AR
If you are experiencing symptoms of fatty liver disease, please do not wait to find medical help. Our passionate team at GastroArkansas is available to assist you with state-of-the-art treatment options for fatty liver disease. By using a patient-centered process, we endeavor to help manage this condition and improve your liver health. Make the first move toward improved health. Contact a location near you in Little Rock, AR to request a consultation.