Minggu, 08 Januari 2012

What Liver Disorders Cause Liver Enlargement?

Enlarged liver is a dangerous disorder which results from a variety of diseases, conditions or illnesses. There can be serious medical consequences for anyone who has it. The size of the growth ranges all the way from slightly enlarged to grossly enlarged. Some have described the human liver as resembling a small American football in shape. It usually weighs between three and four pounds, or one and a half kilograms.

The medical name for an enlarged liver is hepatomegaly.

An enlarged liver is usually a symptom of some other liver problem. It is not considered a disease in and of itself.

Any of the following liver disorders may result in an enlarged liver.

* One of several forms of hepatitis.

* Polycystic liver disease.

* Certain types of infections that have an impact on the liver, including mono and malaria.

* Liver cysts, or small sacs that grow on the liver. They may be empty or may contain watery or mucous-like fluids.

* Cirrhosis, typically the result of a disease like hepatitis or an addiction to alcohol or drugs. Cirrhosis is characterized by scarring of liver tissue, which reduces liver function.

* Fatty liver disease, which occurs when fat accumulates in the liver because of poor eating habits and other causes. This fat reduces the ability of the liver to perform its many functions.

* Certain forms of cancer have been known to cause an enlarged liver. Leukemia is perhaps the most common of these.

Symptoms often depend on the degree of enlargement. A slightly enlarged liver won't present any symptoms. But a grossly enlarged liver may cause abdominal fullness and some pain.

Other liver enlargement symptoms may include one or a combination of the following.

* A condition known as ascites. This disorder is characterized by an accumulation of fluid in the peritoneal cavity, which separates abdominal organs from the abdominal lining.

* Cholestasis, a condition in which the flow of bile from the liver through the bile ducts is obstructed.

* Jaundice, which causes the skin and eyes to take on a yellow color.

It's important to know the cause of an enlarged liver in order to determine the best course of treatment. Often, the cause is excessive drinking. When this is the case, the solution is to stop drinking. If excessive alcohol use is not the problem, then poor diet and lack of exercise could be the reasons. Your health care provider will offer some suggestions about changing your lifestyle.

If you want to prevent any future problems from an enlarged liver, here are some commonly accepted recommendations.

Drink alcohol in moderation, or stop completely. It's also important never consume alcohol while you're taking other drugs.

Be careful when taking multiple medications, and be sure to follow dosage instructions carefully.

Don't take herbal supplements unless you talk to your doctor about them. Some may harm your liver.

Certain combinations of vitamins may also be unhealthy for your liver. Make sure your health care provider approves vitamin usage involving vitamins A, D, E and K.

Be wary of certain common household products. Some aerosols, insecticides and cleaners can harm the liver. Be sure to use such products only in places that are well ventilated.

Above all, eat smart and get some exercise. Doing these two things alone will go a long way toward avoiding an enlarged liver and other liver problems.

1 komentar:

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