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What are the first signs of liver failure?

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Quick Answer

Early symptoms of liver failure are diarrhea, nausea, fatigue and a loss of appetite, according to WebMD. As liver failure progresses, worse symptoms begin to appear, which include bleeding easily, disorientation and confusion, and in extreme cases, coma.

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Full Answer

Liver failure happens in any instance where large amounts of the liver are damaged to the point where it is no longer able to function, explains WebMD. Liver failure can happen within a matter of days, or it can occur over several months to years, which makes it increasingly difficult to determine when it is happening. There are several causes of liver failure, which include hepatitis; adverse reactions to medication; ingestion of poisonous substances, such as wild mushrooms; malnutrition; and consumption of alcohol over an extended period of time.

Early symptoms of liver failure are often related to several other conditions, which makes it difficult to pinpoint the liver as the cause, notes WebMD. In the instance that the early symptoms, such as a combination of nausea, fatigue and diarrhea, happen simultaneously, then a person should seek medical attention immediately as liver failure may be the cause.

One symptom that is noticeably related to liver failure is jaundice, states Mayo Clinic. Jaundice is the process in which the skin and eyes begin to yellow. This symptom is a clear sign that the liver is failing, and a person needs to seek medical attention as quickly as possible.

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