I've been on psych meds for anxiety and depression for 28 years and on pain meds (opiates, Lyrica and meds for all the side effects of these meds) for 15 years. Lots of years on heavy meds. I also am very heavy and binge on sugar and ice cream. My liver enzymes were good in August but a recent CAT scan showed my liver to be enlarged, very fatty and the density had DECREASED by 50% in the past 18 months. I am also a diabetic. I'm trying very hard to change how I eat, but am in a wheelchair and find it impossible to exercise. I'm going to get off the pain meds this coming year no matter how hard it may be (I use Methadone for the chronic pain). Anyone know anyway to gauge how much longer my liver will hang in there? Will eating right and getting off the pain meds help enough to make a big difference or is it too late? I'd appreciate any guidance you could give me. - ElizaJane
Hello ElizaJane. I'm afraid I don't know, and so have no answer to give you. I could read up on what you're asking about. Not sure why the decrease. Theres dozzbaby, and Pup, they're medical, organ people, knowledgeable. Wishing you a good night EJ I'm shutting down shortly, be well, best wishes,
Hi Eliza Jane, I just wanted to add my experience. I had to have my gallbladder out in 1998 & sufferred severly for 2 years after that with the same bending over pain as before the surgery only worse. They had me see so many doctors it was unreal! A liver doctor at the University of Iowa had decided the cause of my high enzyme counts were caused by taking vicodan for so many years for pain. I agreed to try something different, & that was when I was intoduced to methadone because it supposedly wasn't as harmful to the liver. I continued to have the same problem with the pain & high liver enzymes until a new doctor in 2006 did another ERCP & said it was not my liver, but my common bile duct that was spasming for the fact the nipple was not opening correctly to release the bile into the small intestine. That's all it took was a small snip! I was fixed.
Had to have it done a year later due to scar tissue, but haven't had a problem since, & I'm on oxycodone 15mg every 4 hours now. I have read a lot on the narcotics causing problems with the liver, but am not convinced that is the whole problem. Now I understand your problem is completely different than mine, I just don't want you to be without pain meds. Everything I read or was told is that the methadone is the easiest on the liver. I know how saddening this news must be, & will keep you in my thoughts & prayers. If I come up with anything else will let you know...
I would definetly seek a specialist who treats patients for all type of liver dysfunctions. Since you have so many problems it is possible the combinations of meds is creating the problems. It would be nice if it was just a duct and a snip would be the solution! Definetly worth checking.. I think is it wonderful to try getting off the pain meds BUT please do not feel like you have to go off them all. If you can cut back even 50% that could make the difference. When I went on Cymbalta I was able to cut back 50% of the Hydrocodone and or Percocet.Though there are days I take a little more because it is nicer to feel no pain. Or I just have a really bad flare do to weather or going off my Gluten and dairy free diet. I must admit the gluten free diet and cutting back on sugar does make a huge difference. But I had 3 parties this week! I hurt..Ugghhh.
When I tried to cut back on pain medication I suffered so much pain. My pain specialist keeps telling me it is OK to take something because it helps me have a much better quality of life. He is also suggesting I try Nuedxra. It has cough syrup and another med. Can not think of the name at the moment. He has had some good results with patients. This is not a narcotic but they are finding out that combined with other meds like Cymbalta,Lyrica and Savella people have been able to come off of pain medication. I hope to try it in the future but my PCP has me going very slow and not trying too many meds at once. She wants my body to take time adjusting to each change. Every time I make a med change my Thyroid level goes crazy. So I get montly blood tests. Have you tried holistic approach? I also do this approach with my med doctors. There supplements have helped in ways the other doctors couldn't do. But all my doctors feel if something I find is working they are all for it! I am so sorry you are going through this terrible time. until this last post I did not know how hard things are for you. Can I ask why the wheelchair? Even if you only walk short distances and try increasing in such small amounts weekly it is better than nothing. Have you talked to a nutrionist? I had to do that because the Cymbalta made me crave sugar. Once the holidays are over I am going back because she makes me write down everything I eat and then ripes apart what I ate..LOL but what helps is writing it down because I found myself eating better and it helps you eat right. Plus it is motivating to see her and say doing well..LOL But she wont be when I go back in the holidays..LOL I also a pain specialist who specializes in teaching biofeed back for patients with chronic pain. Teaches how to breath better and relax more. It has worked wonders. Now I see him once a month to talk and discuss how I deal with the stress each month and how I can handle my approach differently. We can not change others but we can ourselves. This technique does help.
Well enough of my ranting. Please let me know how you are doing, Do not give upp ever! Your worth the fight! I want you to be able to say I had a good day,minute hour whatever but you deserve that!
Hi ElizaJane! When I was in the hospital in June 2008, they somehow spotted a liver "tumour". Subsequently, I've had MRI's & CT scans & an ultrasound, had liver function tests, went to a local specialist, had a liver biopsy, went to a liver clinic & specialist in Toronto at a large downtown hospital & a customized liver ultrasound. Along the way, they started saying "tumours". So, at the end of all these tests, I either have one or none or several "lesions". The local doctor said I have Fatty Alcoholic Liver Disease & I believe the Toronto doctor said Fatty Non-Alcoholic Liver Disease. I still have pain in my liver (yes, I know that shouldn't happen~~~~if I ever hear that again from a doctor, I'm going to scream like a banshee! LOL)
My liver is still tender & feels enlarged to me. The pain has lessened now & it's not always as sharp as before, however, my liver is usually always tender & sore when it's pressed upon.
I've read quite a bit about this major organ which is the largest internal organ. There aren't very many nerve endings inside the liver so normally you shouldn't feel any pain at all unless it's progressed. I urge you to go to the library, research on medical sites on the world wide web & contact your local American Liver Society for information.
Have you had a liver functions test lately? The majority of persons who have liver cirrhosis aren't drinkers but diabetics. How long have you been diabetic?
I'm sorry, ElizaJane, but I don't know too much about cirrhosis since I didn't think that was my condition in 2008.
Almost everything goes through the liver. If you're able to change your eating habits, this will be most beneficial to your liver since it's already working on the medications in your system. Since your liver is regenerative, if your diet is lessened in fat content, the fatty deposits in your liver will decrease over time.
In my personal opinion, I'd suggest to get testing done for cirrhosis or scarring of the liver as well. My liver wasn't extremely fatty when I was diagnosed with FALD. The liver fat percentage has to reach a certain threshold in order for them to diagnose it in that manner. If you do have FNALD check at least every 6 months to see if there are any significant changes with your liver. My ex-husband took antidepressants for many years & was never tested for liver problems to my knowledge.
Please keep in touch with me, EJ, & let me know how things progress for you. I'm very interested in the outcome. Meanwhile, I'm still undergoing different
tests myself. (I'm a patient patient~~~get it? HA HA HA)
I'll keep my fingers crossed for both of us! All the best, ElizaJane!
from your friend, Wendy :)
P.S. Eating the Chinese vegetable bok choy is supposed to be very beneficial to your liver. Avoid drinking alcohol.
Please do some reading, EJ, about the liver. It's a fascinating organ that used to be thought of as the "heart" of the body centuries ago.
from your friend, Wendy :)
in 2ooo my life changed after open galbladder surgery!they found that my liver was fatty and told me i would need aliver transplant by age 50!well i'm gonna prove them wrong i will be fiffty in sept. and so far me liver is holding it's own!but it's scary to hear things might go wrong with your liver but it's a strang organ it can regenarate it's self !!! so don't worry you will be fine just have your liver panel checked every six months or as offten as your doctor tells ya!!watch the meds you take some otc meds can hurt your liver !wishing the best God bless & merry christmas !!
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