Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt
Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt
Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt
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Monroe Carell Jr.
Children's Hospital
at Vanderbilt
2200 Children's Way
Nashville, TN 37232


(615) 936-1000

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Symptoms and Findings of Liver Disease in Children

 

The following symptoms and findings may indicate that your child’s liver is not functioning as it should. Liver dysfunction may indicate the need for a liver transplant.

  • Jaundice (yellowing of eyes or skin) from the buildup of bilirubin in the blood
  • Excessive itching from elevated bilirubin levels in the blood
  • Delayed growth and development related to malnutrition
  • Weakness and fatigue related to malnutrition or shortness of breath
  • Malnutrition from the liver not adequately taking in or storing nutrients and vitamins from food
  • Loss of appetite, nausea, and weight loss are common in children with liver failure
  • Excess fluid collection in the abdomen (ascites) or feet and legs (edema)
  • Bruising and prolonged bleeding due to blood not clotting as quickly as it should
  • Cirrhosis (scarring of the liver) from chronic liver disease
  • Recurrent cholangitis (infection of the bile ducts)
  • Portal hypertension with bleeding (varices) from elevated blood pressure in the portal vein causing varices of the gastrointestinal tract (most commonly esophageal and stomach varices)
  • Splenomegaly (enlarged spleen) from elevated blood pressure in the portal vein causing the back-up and congestion of blood in the spleen
  • Encephalopathy (decline in brain function) from the buildup of ammonia in the blood causing confusion or worsening levels of consciousness
  • Shortness of breath from ascites or end-stage liver disease

Liver disease that may lead to transplant


Last Edited: April 5, 2016
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