If Your Stomach Feels Like This, Get Checked For Liver Cancer – Better Life
Your stomach can tell you a lot about your health. The pain, nausea, or cramps could be from that sketchy lobster roll you ate for lunch or the gastrointestinal bug your child brought home from summer camp, but your stomach can also be affected by health issues that you wouldn’t normally think about. related to stomach problems. Gallstones, low blood sugar, and pancreatitis can all manifest as stomach upset, and one abdominal symptom in particular can be a warning sign of a serious liver problem. Read on to find out what it is and when to go to the doctor.
READ THIS: If you notice this around your eyes, get your liver checked.
The Mayo Clinic describes the liver as the largest internal organ. About the size of a soccer ball, it’s “located mostly in the upper right part of your abdomen, below your diaphragm, and above your stomach,” the site says. “A small portion extends into the upper left quadrant.”
The liver isn’t just big; it’s also extremely busy. “More … than 500 vital functions have been identified with the liver,” says Johns Hopkins Medicine. The National Center for Biotechnology Information lists some of these functions as helping to support metabolism, immunity, digestion, detoxification and vitamin storage, among others.
Although you may associate your digestive system with organs such as the intestines and esophagus, the liver plays an important role in helping your body digest and feed itself. His main function it’s “processing the nutrients absorbed by the small intestine,” says the Cleveland Clinic. “Liver bile secreted in the small intestine also plays an important role in the digestion of fats and certain vitamins.”
In addition to processing nutrients and producing chemicals, the liver “also detoxifies potentially harmful chemicals,” continues the Cleveland Clinic. “It breaks down and secretes many drugs that can be toxic to your body.” These functions, and the many others performed by the liver, make it a vital part of your body’s well-being. “The liver is so crucial to existence that while you can live with only part of a liver, you cannot live without a liver at all,” Healthline notes.
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Tumors that form in or on the liver are called hepaticmycancerbridge.com tumors, according to the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC). Although some tumors are benign, they can cause health problems if they grow in size, the site says. Additionally, “Liver tumors that are malignant – growing into nearby tissues or spreading to other parts of the body – are liver cancers.”
Liver tumors can secrete hormones which then have an effect on other organs, explains the American Cancer Society. In some cases, this can cause hypercalcaemia (high levels of calcium in the blood). And given the proximity of the liver to the stomach and the support it provides to the digestive process, it makes sense that liver cancer could show up with signs that mimic an upset stomach.
Hypercalcemia can lead to nausea and vomiting, explains Andrea PalkaBSN, RN, OCN and Head of Nursing at CancerBridge.
“Because nausea is an incredibly common symptom of many different conditions, both mild and severe, it’s easy to attribute a bout of nausea to something more common like food poisoning, infection, motion sickness or overeating” , explains Palka. “If your nausea persists or is accompanied by persistent vomiting or any of the other signs of liver cancer, this could be a sign of a liver problem and you should call your GP immediately.
Palka adds that other symptoms of hypercalcemia can include “confusion, constipation, muscle weakness problems, extreme thirst, and frequent urination.”
“Unfortunately, it’s possible to have early-stage liver cancer without showing any symptoms,” says Palka, who also advises people to know their risk for liver disease. Palka explains that some of these risk factors may include “gender, race, whether you have tested positive for hepatitis B virus (HBV) or hepatitis C virus (HPC), consumption of alcohol, obesity and more”.
Chronic hepatitis B or hepatitis C infection poses “the greatest risk of developing liver cancer,” says Palka. “To limit your risk, avoid sharing needles, practice safer sex, and consider getting the HBV vaccine.” She also suggests “reducing your alcohol intake, reducing or quitting smoking, maintaining a healthy weight, and limiting your exposure to cancer-causing chemicals and aflatoxins.”
It is also important to know the other warning signs of liver disease. “The most common symptoms include unintentional weight loss, loss of appetite, pain and swelling in the upper abdomen, weakness and fatigue, jaundice (yellowing of the skin) and white and chalky,” says Palka.