14 Warning Signs of Liver Damage You Shouldn’t Ignore
BY PUREHEALTH RESEARCH | October 3, 2023
Your liver has several major functions that keep you functioning at prime health. It’s important to learn the main 14 warning signs of liver damage because when your liver doesn’t function properly you can get quite sick. This knowledge will help you to notice if something is wrong so you can take action toward controlling your health.
Your liver is responsible for several major functions, including:
- Filtering the blood
- Detoxifying the body from food, alcohol, and environmental toxins
- Producing enzymes that digest and metabolize food
- Synthesizing protein and maintaining adequate fluid and hormone levels
- Storing key nutrients and minerals, and releasing them when the body becomes deficient
Thus, it’s important to note when the liver isn’t working properly so that you can live in optimal health.
Warning Signs of Liver Damage
Your body presents with warning signs of a damaged liver when it’s overworked or struggling to perform its vital functions. When you know the early warning signs of liver failure, it will be easier to get your liver back on track so you can get back to living an energized, healthy life.
1. Skin Changes
One of the warning signs of liver damage is irritated skin, often presenting through itchy, flaky rashes. Of course, skin rashes can be caused by many things but if you’re experiencing them in addition to other signs on this list, it could be one of the many warning signs of liver damage. These rashes can lead to ulcers, which are exacerbated because of the digestive issues associated with both late- and early-stage liver damage.
Some people also suffer from premature wrinkles all over their skin. Liver spots are also common, showing up as brown spots on the face and body. Because of the buildup of toxins, people suffering from liver damage may also suffer from adult acne.
2. Spider Angiomas
These are also called spider veins. When small capillaries underneath your skin break, they show up as spider-like appearances on the skin. The reason that these are caused by a malfunctioning liver is that the liver can’t properly metabolize estrogen, which helps the circulatory system function properly. They are often found on the face, chest, or abdomen and may be a warning sign of liver damage.
3. Bruising and Bleeding
Easy bruising or bleeding, such as nosebleeds or bleeding gums, can be a warning sign of liver damage. The liver provides essential blood-clotting proteins. So, when your liver isn’t working well, you’re more prone to bruising and excessive bleeding.
4. Swollen Feet
Fluid retention is caused by liver damage, which makes the feet swell and become quite uncomfortable. When it becomes serious, it turns into a condition called edema. Swollen feet due to retained fluid are a symptom of liver damage because the liver isn’t producing certain proteins—particularly albumin—which help regulate fluid levels in the body.
5. Abdominal Pain and Swelling
When the liver malfunctions, it causes an imbalance of protein that causes fluid build-up in the liver. This can result in a serious condition called ascites, which gives people a significantly protruding belly, sometimes in conjunction with swollen arms, feet, and ankles. Ascites is often concurrent with cirrhosis.
Of course, this fluid-filled abdomen causes pain as your other organs are squished and your liver struggles. If you feel recurrent throbbing or stabbing pains in the abdomen, it could be a warning sign of liver damage. See a doctor right away.
6. Vomiting with Blood
A malfunctioning liver can’t appropriately eliminate toxins from the body. Thus, your digestive system is thrown off, with many people experiencing nausea or upset stomach. Some people experience bouts of vomiting tinged with blood. The blood comes from varicose veins in the stomach and/or esophagus. It is important to seek medical attention immediately if you experience this symptom.
7. Disturbed Sleep
Once liver damage develops into cirrhosis, it can cause sleep struggles. Cirrhosis makes people more susceptible to obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA—four times more likely. When the toxins in the blood get to such a high level that sleep is greatly disturbed, the combination can even cause someone to go into a coma.
8. Appetite Changes
Since liver damage is associated with digestive struggles, people often feel that they don’t have as much of a regular appetite, which can then lead to excessive weight loss. Not only that, but the liver struggles to metabolize and absorb nutrition, which can mean further health issues.
Since the liver is responsible for filtering toxins from the body, a liver that isn’t functioning properly causes toxins to be stored in the bile. This makes the bile pigment bilirubin remain at excess levels, which causes the skin and eyes to yellow. Jaundice is often accompanied by darker urine and lighter-colored stool.
10. Urinary Issues
Dark urine isn’t the only urinary problem associated with warning signs of liver disease. When toxins build up in the body and can’t be expelled through the urine, it leads to toxicity that causes neurological impairments, including seizures and uncontrollable eye movements, reflexes, and other bodily functions.
11. Stool Problems
Most people experience constipation here and there during their lifetime. Changes in the color or consistency of your stool can be a warning sign of liver damage. This may be due to the liver’s role in processing and excreting bile, which is necessary for proper digestion.
12. Water Retention
The liver’s main functions are all closely connected. As we mentioned in the abdominal swelling sign, when the liver doesn’t synthesize proteins correctly it causes problems. These problems also affect the circulatory system, which is responsible for maintaining appropriate water levels in the body.
Since gravity naturally works on body fluids, the excess water is pulled into the legs and feet. Diuretics can help, but sometimes surgery is necessary. This makes it even more important to recognize early warning signs of liver damage.
13. Personality Changes
Most people wouldn’t think that personality changes would be one of the warning signs of liver damage, but when your liver isn’t functioning properly it can mean cognitive struggles, too. These include confusion, trouble focusing, and loss of concentration. Since sleep disruptions are also a sign of liver damage, these personality changes also come with forgetfulness and lack of energy.
14. Fatigue and Weakness
When the liver is in its early stages of liver damage, many people become weak or fatigued easily. This can often be taken as the result of regular everyday stress, but if it’s combined with one or more symptoms from the rest of the 14 warning signs of liver damage, you should make an appointment with your practitioner. Read our article about the 4 stages of liver disease and learn more!
Prevention of Liver Diseases
Of course, there are several things you can do to keep your liver functioning well. You can eliminate or reduce liver-damaging foods, such as gluten, refined sugar, salty foods, and alcohol. Conversely, you can also add liver-healthy foods to your diet, such as eggs, nuts, berries, and green tea.
Diet changes can be difficult to maintain, though, so one of the easiest ways to improve liver function is to add a supplement to your daily routine. PureHealth Research’s Liver Health Formula is filled with a whole host of anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant-rich compounds that help keep your liver performing its essential jobs at top levels.
Liver Health Formula was developed by Dr. Holly Lucille, ND, one of the leading naturopathic doctors in her field. Together with the team of researchers at PHR, they created a simple capsule that brings about all the natural benefits of vitamins, minerals, and nutrients that help prevent warning signs of liver damage. This addition is easy to keep up with, too, because you only need two capsules a day to get all the benefits of the following nutrients:
- Artichoke extract
- Vitamin D3
You can also implement plenty of lifestyle changes to ensure healthy liver function, such as staying hydrated, exercising daily, getting enough sleep, and reducing stress from your life.
- Your liver is responsible for many major functions, so when it is overworked or damaged the symptoms present in several ways.
- There are early- and late-stage warning signs of liver damage. If you suffer from one or more signs on this list, it could be indicative of a liver that isn’t functioning.
- Some of these are warning signs of other diseases, so even if you have only one or two, make an appointment with your practitioner.
- There are many ways that you can help improve liver function, such as eating a healthy diet, getting enough sleep, and lowering stress.
- Adding supplements for cleanse and detox, such as Liver Health Formula, is an easy way to give your liver all the nutrition it needs with just two capsules a day.
Your liver is responsible for detoxifying, metabolizing, filtering, synthesizing, and storing nutrients. These are crucial jobs that can’t be performed properly when the liver has to work too hard to filter out toxins and chemicals. You can take steps to ensure a healthy liver, though, such as adding a supplement and eating a healthy diet. If you notice any warning signs of liver damage, you must see a doctor right away.
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