Has your baby been diagnosed with liver dysfunction or chronic liver disease? Are you intensely worried about the health conditions of your little angel? Fret not! Read our post and learn all about liver problems in babies. If treated earlier stages, you can protect your little one from further health complexities.
What Is A Liver Disease?
Liver disease or a hepatic disease is any disturbance that harshly affects the normal functioning of the liver. If the liver functioning is interrupted, it can lead to severe health discomforts in your baby. Babies with genetic liver problems need requisite medical guidance and a proper disease management plan (1).
What Causes Liver Problems In Babies:
Some of the common factors to induce liver problems in infants include:
Certain viruses and parasites can impose negative effects on liver functioning. It may cause liver inflammation, and your baby may have a risk of developing Hepatitis A, B or C.
[ Read: Symptoms Of Hepatitis In Babies ]
2. Immune System Abnormality:
There are specific diseases that affect the liver and can induce liver problems in your baby. Some of the diseases include autoimmune hepatitis and primary biliary cirrhosis.
If your baby inherits abnormal genes from either or both the parents, he is at a greater risk of liver problems. Some of the genetically induced liver diseases are Wilson’s disease, Hemochromatosis.
[ Read: Kidney Reflux In Babies ]
If your baby encounters cancerous growth in the liver or bile duct, the risks of liver damages are high (2).
Signs Of Liver Problems In Babies:
Some of the observable symptoms of liver problems in babies or infants include:
The skin and eyes of your baby may turn pale and yellowish in color. The skin discoloration occurs due to the high level of Bilirubin in the bloodstream. Your child may suffer from high fever along with chills and vomiting.
The bile flow is restricted to flow through the liver, and the liver may get harshly affected.
3. Liver Enlargement:
If the doctor diagnoses your baby with enlarged liver or hepatomegaly, your child may cry more often due to intense abdominal pain.
[ Read: Necrotizing Enterocolitis In Babies ]
4. Esophageal Varices:
The dilated blood vessels in the walls of the esophagus are prone to encounter bleeding.
Your baby may encounter abrupt fluid buildup in the abdominal cavity, and the abdomen swells up.
6. Vomiting blood:
You may encounter blood along with his vomit if the condition affects his upper GI (gastrointestinal) tract.
- Bloody Stool
- Loss of appetite
- Poor weight gain
- Yellow urine (3)
[ Read: Loss Of Appetite In Babies ]
Diagnosing Liver Problems In Babies:
The doctor may inquire about the medical history thoroughly and conduct physical checkup of your baby. The doctor may them recommend taking certain medical tests to diagnose liver disease in babies:
- Blood Tests: There is a group of blood tests or the liver function tests that help diagnose liver malfunctioning or damage. Some of such tests are Alanine aminotransferase (ALT), Aspartate aminotransferase (AST), Alkaline phosphatase (ALP), Total bilirubin and Albumin and total protein.
- Imaging Tests: CT scan, Ultrasound, and MRIs help diagnose liver damage.
- Tissue Analysis: By extracting a tissue sample from the liver to diagnose liver problems, the doctor performs a tissue analysis. Insert a long and sharp needle through the skin and extract the tissue from the liver (4).
Treating Baby Liver Problems:
As a parent, you may know of the importance of the Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B vaccinations. Through proper vaccination and effective treatment, your baby can get relief from liver disorders.
Did your baby suffer from liver problems? What symptoms did your observe? How did you take care of your little one? Tell us about it here. Leave a comment below.
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