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An unusual sensation in the ribs could signal last stage of a deadly disease

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This condition affects more than 90% of persons with obesity, 60% of people with diabetes, and 20% of people who are at a healthy weight.

Fatty liver disease can develop when fat in the human liver exceeds 5% of the weight of the liver.

NAFLD normally has no symptoms in the early stages, but it can be identified with a blood sample and a liver function test.

There are four stages of NAFLD:

  • Simple fatty liver or steatosis
  • Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH)
  • Fibrosis
  • Cirrhosis.

Nausea, weight loss, disinterest in food, or a mix of the three are common symptoms of early-stage liver damage.

When it advances to non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) or fibrosis, the liver becomes inflamed and the warning signals appear.

A person with NASH may feel:

  1. extremely tired,
  2. fatigued,
  3. a pain in the top-right of the belly over the lower-right side of the ribs,
  4. and losing weight for no reason.

The next or advanced stage is Cirrhosis.

Cirrhosis is the most advanced stage of liver disease, where scar tissue replaces good liver tissue.

“At this stage, the liver stops working properly, and symptoms start to appear, such as yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes and a dull ache in the lower right side of the ribs,” according to Liver Health.

“The scar tissue in liver cirrhosis is difficult to remove, although further progression can be halted if the cause of the liver damage is removed.”

The Mayo Clinic warns: “The liver damage done by cirrhosis generally can’t be undone.

“But if liver cirrhosis is diagnosed early and the cause is treated, further damage can be limited and, rarely, reversed.”

Cirrhosis of the liver is known as “end-stage liver disease”.

Blood tests, scans, and a liver biopsy are used to get a diagnosis; if cirrhosis is discovered, you will be referred to a hepatologist.

There is no cure for severe liver damage, therefore treatment will focus on symptom management and reducing the disease’s course.

Liver failure can be prevented by making changes to your daily habits.

Image Credit: Getty

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