Show Me Some Evidence That I’m Doing Okay with Liver Disease
Sometimes we want evidence that we’re doing okay. With liver disease, that’s not always easy. We can look perfectly fine on the outside, and yet our liver may be sending out fibrous bands trying to heal itself. We all know that as the liver tries to heal inflammation from hep C and the scar tissue that has been created.
Looking For a Trail of Evidence
When we have scars on the inside and seem fine on the outside, it doesn’t match. Show me some evidence that I’m doing ok with liver disease.
Your blood lab values can give you a pretty accurate look at how your liver is doing. For more details, read about liver lab tests.
Your own personal opinion can be the best. When we get sick slowly over time, it can be deceptive. Comparing ourselves to another person is not always an accurate either. If you find yourself needing more and more sleep, it can be a sign that your liver needs help.
If you are not battling excessive nausea, that’s a good sign. Having an upper GI test done can give you proof that there are NO bleeding varices. So many things can be an indicator of worsening liver disease. This was a huge cue that I missed. Thinking that my “tummy bug” was going to get better by eating red popsicles, I didn’t understand that internal bleeding was literally coming from.
This one can be tricky. We think we’re spot on and totally rational. With brain fog from hepatic encephalopathy (HE), we may be a little loony. Doctors have tried to create a test, and even an app, that gives an evaluation of how well you’re thinking. The bottom line is, if you’re wearing all of your clothes, feeding yourself, and know your address, I think you’re in pretty good shape. HE can rob you of the ability to function.
Soft smooth skin is a sign that your liver is functioning pretty well. This was another area that could have given me an early clue. I actually googled dry skin, easy bruising, and eczema. I just never dreamed that my liver was sick. The scaly patches on my ears and the snake like skin got treated with lotions. But, it was evidence that my liver was failing. After treatment, my skin got better, even though I still had end stage cirrhosis. The bruising got better too. I finally had some evidence that the treatment was working.
If your eyes have turned yellow, it is a sure sign that you’re pretty sick. Once the virus is gone, they may clear up quickly.
If your fingers and toes are chubby, it could be swelling from too much sodium in your diet. If your ankles and belly start to swell, look out! It’s ascites.
Look for the cues & talk with your doctor
Our liver is so important, yet it does not always scream loud and clear. When dealing with Hepatitis C, look for evidence that everything is going well. If you see outward signs, talk to your doctor about getting lab work done. Looking for your own cues can lead toward liver health.
Do you experience long-term side effects from hep C treatment?