Fatty liver disease: Having a low-grade fever is a lesser-known warning sign

Liver disease: NHS Doctor talks about link with alcohol

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Alcohol abuse, hepatitis viruses, and obesity are the leading three risk factors for death from liver disease. Other causes of liver disease include cancer, autoimmune diseases, and genetic or metabolic disorders. Sadly, symptoms of many liver disorders do not manifest until serious and sometimes irreversible damage has occurred. Having a low-grade fever is a lesser-known warning sign of your risk to fatty liver disease.

The liver is one of the hardest-working organs in the body.

It helps you digest food, convert it to energy, and store that energy for future use.

It also plays an important role in filtering toxic substances out of your blood.

When a person’s liver isn’t functioning properly due to liver disease, it can have potentially serious health effects.

This is why it’s imperative to know how to recognise symptoms of a potential liver issue.

According to Healthline, as fatty liver disease progresses, it can cause:

  • Low-grade fever
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Jaundice

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In a study published in the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health, intermittent fever in a patient with apparent fatty liver was further investigated.

A 41-year-old female presented with non‐specific abdominal pain and intermittent hyperpyrexia (38°C).

“A chest X ray revealed no lesion and liver sonography demonstrated a patchy hypo‐hyper‐echoic polycyclic area in the anterior‐superior parenchyma compatible with segmental fatty liver,” noted the study.

The study found that fever could be an early indication of fatty liver disease.

Cleveland Clinic lists the common early symptoms of fatty liver disease to look out for which include:

  • Abdominal pain or a feeling of fullness in the upper right side of the abdomen (belly).
  • Nausea, loss of appetite or weight loss
  • Yellowish skin and whites of the eyes.
  • Swollen abdomen and legs.
  • Extreme tiredness or mental confusion.
  • Weakness.

Why does it occur?

Fatty liver disease occurs when fat builds up in the liver, which causes swelling and impairs liver function.

Alcoholic fatty liver disease can occur even after a short period of heavy drinking.

Symptoms are not usually present in this stage, though the American Liver Foundation reports some may feel weak or fatigued or notice discomfort in the right upper abdomen.

Alcoholic drinkers can usually reverse liver disease in this stage, however, if drinking continues, damage to the liver will not subside and will result in irreversible disease.

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