Fatty Liver Disease: Types, Risk Factors, and Symptoms
Fatty Liver Disease, also known as hepatic steatosis, is caused by fat accumulation in the liver. Having a certain amount of fat build-up in the liver is quite normal, but if it is 5% to 10% of the weight of your liver it turns into a problem.
However, in most people, you will not see any fatty liver disease symptoms, and even it does not cause any severe health issues for them. In some cases, it may lead to liver damage.
Indeed, only for 10% to 35% of people dealing with this disease, the condition gets worse. Usually, it advances through three stages- steatohepatitis, fibrosis, and cirrhosis.
- Steatohepatitis– The condition in which the liver gets swollen and its tissues get damaged.
- Fibrosis– At the places where the liver has got damaged, scar tissues are formed. This is called fibrosis.
- Cirrhosis– There comes a stage when extensive scar tissues replace healthy tissue, this is called cirrhosis of the liver.
Types of Fatty Liver Disease
Mainly it is categorized into two: non-alcoholic and alcoholic. If you want to learn about them, continue reading!
Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)
If you have excess fat build-up in your liver and no history of heavy drinking, you will be diagnosed with NAFLD. Further, NAFLD is divided into three:
If there is neither inflammation nor any other health complications and fat build-up in the liver, the condition is referred to as simple nonalcoholic fatty liver.
Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH)
It is the condition that occurs when the excess fat build-up accompanies liver inflammation in the liver. NASH is an advanced type of NAFLD that leads to a chronic disease called liver cirrhosis.
Acute fatty liver of pregnancy (AFLP)
This is rare but a serious complication of pregnancy. AFLP usually appears in a pregnant woman in the third trimester, and if left untreated, it may cause serious health risks to the mother and the fetus.
Alcoholic Fatty liver disease
Well, there is no hiding from the fact drinking a lot of alcohol damages your liver. When it gets damaged, it fails to function properly, resulting in the building up excess fat. This condition is called alcoholic fatty liver disease.
If you have no inflammation accompanied by fat accumulation, doctors will diagnose you with alcoholic hepatitis. Or, if your liver is inflamed, the condition will be referred to as alcoholic steatohepatitis (ASH), and if it is left untreated, it leads to liver failure.
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Obviously, drinking high amounts of alcohol puts you at a high risk of damaging your liver and developing liver disease. Besides it, you can be at heightened risk if you are/have:
- Insulin resistance
- Type 2 diabetes
- Polycystic ovary syndrome
- History of infections (like hepatitis C)
- Metabolic syndrome (like high cholesterol level, high blood sugar levels)
What are the fatty liver disease symptoms?
As discussed earlier, only after the disease has progressed to the third stage of cirrhosis, will you be able to have some kind of symptoms? Otherwise, there will be no symptoms.
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The most commonly found symptoms are:
- Abdominal pain
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss, fatigue
- Nausea, or a feeling of fullness all the time
- Yellowish skin (signs of jaundice)
- Edema (swollen abdomen and legs)
- Extreme weakness or mental confusion
If all this information has scared you, no need to worry! The good news is that it is easy to prevent or even reverse the symptoms with some simple lifestyle changes. Try to limit the consumption of alcohol, maintain a healthy weight, eat a nutrient-rich diet, do at least 30 minutes of exercise, but along with this, don’t forget to follow your doctor’s recommendations and treatments. More Information Visit this site: f95zone