The liver is one of the largest organs of the body and it plays an important role in the metabolism of fats, protein, and carbohydrates. It also metabolizes drugs and removes toxic chemicals from the blood.

The liver has the ability to regenerate damaged cells, but repeated damage to the cells can lead to several conditions like inflammation, cirrhosis, etc. The liver does not show any of these symptoms until the damage to the liver has been advanced. Damage to the liver commonly occurs due to excessive consumption of alcohol, viral infections like hepatitis,and\or a fatty diet.

So, here are the top 15 warning signs that indicate that your liver is unhealthy :

1. Itchy skin

Also known as pruritus (cholestatic pruritus), this  occurs when bile (yellow fluid produced by the liver which helps in digestion and absorption fat-soluble vitamin and also, in the elimination of feces) is accumulated in the blood causing the bile salts to get deposited into the skin.


2. Yellowing of skin and eyes

This can be due to high levels of bilirubin (breaking down of red blood cells). Yellowing of skin and eyes can be an indication of liver diseases such as jaundice, cirrhosis, hepatitis B.

3. Memory loss or confusion

Confusion or loss of memory could be due to the accumulation of toxins in the brain resulting in hepatic encephalopathy.


4. Easy bruising

Easy bruising can be a sign of liver damage as the production of protein required for blood clotting is decreased.


5. Feeling bloated

Bloating after having a small meal can be a sign of fluid accumulation in the abdomen (ascites). Abdominal swelling is one of the warning signs of liver disease.


6. Dark Urine

Dark urine can be an indicating sign of a liver disease. As bilirubin is the sole reason behind the discolouration of skin and eyes, dark urine is due to the excretion of bilirubin through the kidneys.

7. Bad breath

Foul breath (fetor hepaticus) can be due to excessive dimethyl sulfide which is a sign of liver failure.


8. Enlarged male breast

Gynecomastia may be due to the failure of the liver to regulate the production and breakdown of hormones.


9. Vomiting blood

This is a medical emergency and can be due to scarring of the liver which prevents the backflow of blood through the organs causing a pressure to build up in the stomach and the oesophagal veins.

Bursting of these veins results in vomiting blood (haematemesis).


10. Pain in abdomen

Dull and vague pain in the upper right side of the abdomen can be due to inflammation of the liver.


11. Blemishes and increase in pigmentation on face

This can occur if the liver is not functioning as it should, causing the estrogen to increase, which further leads to an increase in the production of melanin, causing blemishes and hyperpigmentation on the face and the entire body.


12. Red palms

Palmar erythema (redness, burning, and itchiness of palm) can be a sign of liver damage due to abnormal levels of hormones in the blood.


13. Lack of concentration

Fatigue and loss of concentrate could be due to the accumulation of toxins, as the liver is not being able to detoxify the toxins.

These signs can further progress to forgetfulness or even coma.


14. Spider veins

These are swollen blood vessels beneath the skin which appear like spider webs. It is solely due to the increased estrogen in the blood as the liver is not being able to metabolize.

Spider veins are one of the main detectable features which are present in almost all the patients having a chronic liver disease.


15. Loss of appetite

Reduced appetite could be due to slow digestion which often leads to bloating.