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Symptoms of Liver Disease

for Veterans and the Public

Symptoms of liver disease


If something happens to the liver suddenly, it is "acute." Some acute liver problems will cause symptoms suddenly as well. Symptoms of acute liver disease can include:

  • Tiredness or weakness
  • Jaundice (yellowing of the eyes and skin)
  • Fever
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Dark urine or very pale colored stools
  • Pain under the ribs on the right side

Up to half of all people with acute liver disease have no symptoms at all. Some types of acute liver disease get better without treatment, and the liver heals itself entirely. On rare occasions an acute liver injury can require hospitalization and even liver transplant right away.


If something is continuing to affect the liver over time, after 6 months it is "chronic." Many people with chronic liver problems will have no symptoms at all and may not even know they have a liver problem. Sometimes they develop symptoms only when the liver has been damaged for many years.