Liver Specialist Vancouver - The liver is a body organ which is required to be able to do numerous functions within the body, including protein synthesis, detoxification, and the production of biochemicals that are important for digestion. The liver is needed for the survival of the body. Liver dialysis may be used temporarily but there is no way to function for long term without a liver.
The jobs that the liver performs, consists of glycogen storage, plasma protein synthesis, red blood cells decomposition, hormone production and detoxification. The liver sits below the diaphragm within the abdominal-pelvic area of the abdomen. The liver is responsible for bile production. This is an alkaline compound which emulsifies lipids to help in digestion. The tissues that make the liver are highly specialized. They regulate a large amount of high volume biochemical reactions, like for example the breakdown and synthesis of complex and small molecules.
The liver is rather unique in that it is capable of natural regeneration. With as little as 25%, the liver can make a full regeneration into a whole liver. This is considered to be compensatory growth rather than true regeneration. Thus, the lobes of the liver which are taken out do not re-grow, and the growth of the liver is a restoration of function and not original form. In true regeneration, both the original function and form are restored.
Diseases of the Liver
The liver in fact, supports almost every organ within the body and is very important for survival. Nonetheless, the liver is prone to many diseases because of its location in the body and its multidimensional functions which it does. Amongst the most common liver illnesses consist of: alcohol damage, cirrhosis, fatty liver, hepatitis, A, B, C and E, cancer and tumors and damage caused by heavy drug use, especially cancer drugs and acetaminophen, also called paracetamol.
Many diseases of the liver are accompanied by jaundice as the increased levels of bilirubin in the body will often result from the breaking up of the haemoglobin of dead red blood cells. Usually, the liver removes bilirubin from the blood and excretes it through bile. Sicknesses that affect liver function would result in derangement of these processes. Luckily, the liver has a large reserve capability and also a huge ability to regenerate. Usually, the liver just exhibits symptoms after extensive damage has happened.
Classic liver damage symptoms include: dark urine when bilirubin mixes with the urine, pale stools happen when the brown pigment stercobilin is absent from the stool. This pigment is derived from bilirubin metabolites which are produced within the liver. Jaundice is the yellow tinge on the whites of the eyes or the skin that happens where bilirubin deposits on the skin. This results in an intense itching sensation which is the most common complaint by people suffering liver failure.
Excessive fatigue occurs due to a generalized loss of nutrients, vitamins and minerals. Swelling in the feet, abdomen and ankles occurs because the liver fails to make albumin. Easy bruising and bleeding are other symptoms. Substances that help to prevent bleeding are produced in the liver, therefore, when liver damage is present, severe bleeding can result as these substances are not available anymore.
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