What Are Symptoms of Fatty Liver Disease?
Liver disease is a somewhat common condition characterized by an overabundance of fat in an individual’s liver cells. This can be the result of excessive alcohol, or it can happen in those who consume minimal alcohol. Fatty liver disease may not exhibit signs in the early stages; however, if left untreated, it might cause worrisome liver troubles. At Connecticut GI, GI doctors provide expert care for fatty liver disease. Read on while we go over the commonly known symptoms of the condition, how it is diagnosed and handled, and how our gastrointestinal specialists in Connecticut are able to be of assistance.
Are there common signs and symptoms of fatty liver disease?
Fatty liver disease is usually split into two categories: non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and alcoholic fatty liver disease. Knowing the early signs of fatty liver disease is crucial for prompt treatment and control. Signs and symptoms could include:
- Fatigue and weakness
- High enzymes in the liver
- Abdominal pain in the upper right portion of the abdomen
- Unintended loss of weight
- A swollen liver
If you are dealing with any number of these signs or if you have any other issues affecting your liver, we suggest you connect with one of our gastroenterology practices in Connecticut.
How is fatty liver disease (steatosis) diagnosed?
The diagnosis of fatty liver disease typically involves a combination of learning your medical history, a physical exam, and specific tests. Our Connecticut providers may start by reviewing your signs and symptoms and lifestyle, then performing a physical examination to check for liver enlargement. Performing a blood test will help us evaluate liver enzymes and liver function, establishing abnormalities that may suggest fatty liver disease. Ultrasounds and other imaging tests, like MRIs and CT scans, can help our gastroenterologists get a closer look at your liver and see fat accumulation. For some, a biopsy of the liver could be needed in order to determine a diagnosis. An early and accurate detection of the condition is necessary for deciding pertinent care and fatty liver disease treatment plans.
What treatments are viable for the disease?
Treating fatty liver disease commonly focuses on controlling the root conditions and lifestyle components that cause the condition. This may include multiple strategies from the list below:
- Lifestyle adjustments: Such changes might include not drinking alcoholic drinks, starting a more nutritious diet, getting regular exercise, and attaining a healthy weight (if necessary).
- Medications: Some medicines may be prescribed to help control conditions that contribute to this disease, including high cholesterol and diabetes.
- Regular monitoring: Routine appointments allow our team to study the progression of your disease and change the treatment as needed.
A liver transplant may be advised in severe cases of fatty liver disease, such as if substantial liver damage has occurred.
How might fatty liver disease alter a person’s life expectancy?
Life expectancy rates for fatty liver disease can be affected by many factors, including the form of fatty liver disease and how early on it was diagnosed. In the absence of medical help, fatty liver disease may turn into a more complicated liver problem, which could include liver cirrhosis or liver cancer. With appropriate treatment, however, many of our patients are successful in managing the condition adequately and often continue to experience a typical life expectancy.
Access treatment for fatty liver disease in Connecticut
If you or a loved one is experiencing symptoms of fatty liver disease, please immediately seek medical help. The expert team at Connecticut GI is here to help you with state-of-the-art fatty liver disease treatments. By utilizing a patient-focused approach to care, we aspire to help you manage this condition and enhance the health of your liver. Take the first step toward better health and wellness. Call our team in Connecticut to request an appointment.