Fatty Liver

Fatty Liver services offered in Midlothian, N. Chesterfield, Short Pump, Henrico, Richmond and Mechanicsville, VA

Fatty liver disease is a common condition that can develop into serious inflammation, scarring, and liver failure. At Richmond Gastroenterology Associates, the team of expert gastroenterologists offers both evaluation and treatment for fatty liver disease. If you’re at risk for nonalcoholic or alcoholic fatty liver disease, call one of the offices located throughout Henrico, Mechanicsville, Midlothian, Chesterfield, Richmond, and Short Pump, Virginia, or request an appointment online now for an expert assessment.


Fatty Liver Q & A

What are the symptoms of fatty liver disease?

In its earlier stages, fatty liver disease may not cause noticeable symptoms. Some of the first signs of fatty liver disease are fatigue and discomfort or pain in the upper right side of your abdomen.

If you develop scarring, or cirrhosis, of the liver as a result of fatty liver disease, you may experience:

  • Weight loss and loss of appetite
  • Abdominal swelling and pain
  • Yellowed skin and eyes
  • Weakness and fatigue
  • Itchy skin
  • Leg swelling
  • Weblike clusters of blood vessels under your skin 

The team at Richmond Gastroenterology Associates evaluates your liver through blood and imaging tests to determine the extent of your disease. If cirrhosis is present, the damage could be serious and potentially life-threatening. 

What causes fatty liver disease?

You may develop fatty liver disease if your body doesn’t metabolize fat efficiently or produces too much on its own. Your body naturally stores some fat in liver cells, but if there’s too much, it accumulates and causes fatty liver.

You may develop fatty liver disease because of:

  • Alcohol abuse
  • Obesity
  • High blood sugar and insulin resistance
  • High levels of triglycerides 

While some people are genetically predisposed to the disease, rarer causes of fatty liver include pregnancy and hepatitis C.

What is the treatment for fatty liver disease?

The expert gastroenterologists at Richmond Gastroenterology Associates do everything possible to treat fatty liver disease, prevent cirrhosis, and avoid subsequent liver failure. If you do develop liver failure, you may need a liver transplant.

Lifestyle changes are the first line of treatment for fatty liver. Currently, no medications are approved for treating fatty liver disease; however, lifestyle changes are the first line of treatment and can be incredibly beneficial. Your provider can help you develop a plan to limit or avoid alcohol, lose weight, and make dietary changes.

Recent research shows the positive impact a minimally-processed, primarily plant-based diet can have on fatty liver patients. 

Fatty liver disease is a common, but potentially deadly, condition. If you have risk factors or symptoms of fatty liver, call Richmond Gastroenterology Associates, or request an appointment using the online tool now.