Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease usually does not cause symptoms in the initial stages, but as the condition progresses, a telltale sign appears in the “lower abdomen” that requires urgent medical attention, according to express.
Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a term that refers to a group of conditions caused by a buildup of fat in the liver, usually seen in people who are overweight or obese. The condition can be life-threatening if not treated.
Although fatty liver disease does not cause symptoms in its infancy, it can progress through a number of stages that cause visible changes in the body, these stages include nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, a more serious form of the disease, and fibrosis, where persistent inflammation causes In the occurrence of scars around the liver.
Swelling in the lower abdomen, called ascites, may indicate that fatty liver disease has progressed to later stages. Other warning signs include:
Yellowing of the eyes and skin
Dark black tar stools
Periods of confusion or poor memory
Itchy skin (itching).
People with liver disease who show any of the above symptoms are advised to seek ‘urgent medical attention’.
Diagnosis of fatty liver
The NHS explains that nonalcoholic fatty liver disease is often diagnosed after a blood test called a liver function test produces an abnormal result and other liver conditions, such as hepatitis, are ruled out.
The authority also explained that the condition can also be monitored during an abdominal ultrasound, which is a type of examination where sound waves are used to create an image of the inside of the body.
-Are you in danger?
Experts don’t know exactly why some people accumulate fat in the liver. There is limited understanding of why some people develop fatty liver and inflammation that progresses to cirrhosis.
However, there are strong associations with signs of poor health. According to the Mayo Clinic, nonalcoholic steatohepatitis is associated with:
Being overweight or obese
Insulin resistance, where cells do not absorb sugar in response to the hormone insulin
High blood sugar (hyperglycemia), which indicates prediabetes or type 2 diabetes
High levels of fats, especially triglycerides, in the blood.
Together, the Mayo Clinic explains, these health problems promote fat deposition in the liver, and for some, this extra fat acts as a poison for liver cells, causing hepatitis and a buildup of scar tissue.
-Can it be cured?
There are no specific treatments yet, but it may encourage doctors to make lifestyle changes to prevent the condition from getting worse. Losing excess weight can reverse some fat buildup and even some cirrhosis in the liver, but it is advised not to lose weight too quickly, as this may cause problems. in the liver.
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