Pressure and Discomfort Liver Area
About 3 weeks ago I noticed while driving that it felt like the ribs on my right side were pressing against my liver. It was a little uncomfortable but not painful and I was fine in any other position. That Thursday I stopped and picked up a case of beer and ended up going through 9 of them. The next day I noticed a pressure in my liver area and it was uncomfortable. At times it feels like bloating and others it really feels like I can feel my liver sitting there and it feels a bit like it is enlarged or swollen.
It got worse the next 2 or 3 days but no pain. I had my girlfriend have a good feel around to see if she felt anything abnormal (she is in her second year of RN schooling). She did not feel anything abnormal and it did not seem noticeably bigger to her. Over the last 2 weeks it has very slowly diminished but is still there and at times gets a bit worse than all but disappears. Since that very first day I was worried about my Liver since it was in that area and I have not touched a drop of alcohol. I have cleaned up my eating habits and am eating much more liver friendly foods. Lots of raw Veggis, very little red meat or greasy food, lots of green tea.
I am 36 and well lets just say I liked to party and have always loved my beer. I have went years without drinking and than other years I drank alot. The past year I was drinking 12 - 20 beer a week up until 4-5 months ago where I cut back and was drinking the same amount per week but only 1-2 weeks of the month. Prior to that case which started my right side problem I had only drank a few times in the prior 2 months and not too heavily.
I am not obese and am packing around maybe 15-18 lbs of extra weight at 5 '11. I have never thought much about my health and kind of took it for granted until now. This has been a needed slap to say hey man wakeup. You want to see your boys grow up or what? Alcohol has never been a addiction for me I just really enjoy it. i have no problem not to touch it again...ever if needed.
I have spent the last few weeks researching and reading about all types of things and to me it seems most likely I have fatty liver (alchohol). Though I won't know for sure of course until i can make it to the doctor. I have no symptoms at all other than the slowly fading pressure and discomfort.
I work online so the internet is kind of like a second home for me and I felt the need to post about this thing that could possible be so bad. Much of the research i have done has been on these boards and I get a very good vibe from the community here.
I am going to try and get in to see the doctor this friday and cross my fingers that I haven't completely screwed myself.
Thanks for listening :)
Re: Pressure and Discomfort Liver Area
Hi Dradden, & welcome!
Getting some blood labs done is a great place to start. An ultrasound is also a cheap and easy test your doc may not mind ordering, but this depends on whether or not you're willing to confess you're worried about alcohol and you may not want to go there just now. An ultrasound would most likely show fatty liver, which is inconclusive.
It's important to understand, most drinkers get more than one warning/wake up call that alcohol is affecting their health before they get in serious trouble health-wise. It's very unlikely you've gone past a point of recovering your health completely. The hard part is judging how you want to go with alcohol in the future.
Older drinkers like to say: "you can't party like you used to" (as you get older), and this is of course true. Going teetotal for life is an option, but you might consider another alternative... Moderate adult drinking. Instead of picking up a case of beer on a whim and having a major beer-fest once in a while, you might consider a cocktail or a glass of wine over dinner with your sweetheart as a more responsible alternative.
Alcohol can give your spirit a warm fuzzy glow, and add more life to your life, but making the change from binge drinking to adult drinking patters is essential as you head into middle age. The best thing about drinking in moderation is... You can most likely continue to do this for another decade or two. If you continue with youthful drinking patterns (big binges followed by recovery periods), you're more likely to get into trouble and need to swear off alcohol to save your health.
"Moderation in all things, and to thine own self be true"! Stay out of trouble with alcohol, and you may be able to enjoy it for many years to come.
Best of Luck with your labs. Keep in mind, liver enzymes won't tell you how much damage has been done in the past (unless the damage is severe)... They just show how inflamed your liver is when the blood is drawn. Even an ultrasound will not show early stage liver disease, but it will show fatty liver, which is not a serious problem as long as inflammation (liver enzymes) are not seriously over their norms.
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