Cirrhosis often does not cause symptoms in the early stages. Symptoms start when scar tissue replaces healthy cells and the liver begins to fail. The symptoms a person has depends on the amount of damage.
The liver has many roles in the body. It helps make blood clotting factors and bile. It process cholesterol and maintain normal blood sugar levels. It also helps remove toxins like alcohol and drugs from the body. A liver that does not function well can disrupt normal functions in the body. Many of these symptoms are related to these functions being disrupted.
Early symptoms are:
Early symptoms in men may be:
When the disease worsens, problems may be:
Cirrhosis. American Liver Foundation website. Available at: http://www.liverfoundation.org/abouttheliver/info/cirrhosis. Accessed January 6, 2021.
Cirrhosis. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases website. Available at: https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/liver-disease/cirrhosis. Accessed January 6, 2021.
Cirrhosis of the liver. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/cirrhosis-of-the-liver-31. Accessed January 6, 2021.
Ge PS, Runyon BA. Treatment of Patients with Cirrhosis. N Engl J Med. 2016 Aug 25;375(8):767-777.
Last reviewed December 2020 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Daniel A. Ostrovsky, MD Last Updated: 1/8/2021