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Avatar universal

Liver pain - metallic taste?

In early March I began to have symptoms including light-headedness, mild nausea, and a "synthetic" feeling accompanied by a metallic taste in my mouth.  I had Hep A close to three years ago, and tested negative for b&c.  My LFT and CBC were normal, except for a 1.9 total billirubin count.

The more disconcerting symptoms have since subsided.  The only thing that persists is a light, intermittant pain under the right side of the rib cage along with the metallic taste.  The two seem to be correlated (they are both present, or neither is present).

I am, first of all, trying to determine if this is indeed liver pain... it is very mild, intermittant, and non-bothersome.  Also, has anyone experienced this metallic taste??

Thanks very much...
10 Responses
Avatar universal
you need a biopsy of the liver to determin exactly what is going on with your liver...cirhosis and end stage liver disease is what you don't want...you need a hepatologist or at least an intellegent gastrointerologist to help you at this point.

by the way most folks here have the hep c and may not be able to help much with the other forms of hepatitus...so you may not get many answers to your question here. wish i could be more helpful...sandi
Avatar universal
Yesterday along with 3 months ago I saw two different Gastro docs regarding the pain under my rib cage and a few other places. To my surprise they both told me that the liver would not cause pain!! So i asked again if he (they) were sure and they both said yes. Go figure. My pain comes and goes, sometimes my back on the right lower side feels a deep pain or it can be in other places also. So, now I am on the hunt for a doctor who can help me with this discomfort. I have had Hep C 30 some years, no tx as of yet, exremely healthy, no other sides, vitamin therapy.  The pain started last fall the same time my ast/alts went up so I can't help put think its related and also all the other people who have come to this site and and said the same thing.  Good luck
Possibility that simple over the counter medicines or other are causing your asl and Alt levels to spike. Also avoid nsaids. I guess Advil may be your best bet. Ask your Dr.
Avatar universal
I think a biopsy would be rather extreme in my case.  Other than a 1.9 tot. bilirubin, everything else was perfectly normal... I feel perfectly fine, exercise vigorously, and have a good diet.  I'm just wondering if this metallic taste has been experienced by others, as I'm trying to figure out if it may be associated with my liver... it could be something unrelated.
The taste you are experiencing may well be from a food. Many overseas Countries are still using " Baker's Ammonia" in their foods. Yuck! Tastes like pure Ammonia! Yet harmless
Avatar universal
all i mean is that you can't know what's up with your liver without a biopsy...the blood tests and scans can give you hints but not definate answers. but if you want a step before a biopsy you could try a ct scan or an ultrasound, or more blood tests, perhaps a fibrosure...

as for metalic tastes...blood, ammonia??? hard to say???

sorry if i came accross too drastic...i guess i was thinking liver damage. i get liver pain and i have stage/grade 3-4 liver damage.

i wish you the best.

Avatar universal
it's not really the liver that causes the pain. it's the membrain around the liver that causes it when swelling or enlarged...
Avatar universal
You both need biospy's and a CT Scan with Contrast. The biopsy will determine the health of your liver, the scan to rule out abnormal growth on your liver.

Its plain ignorance to say the liver doesn't cause pain. It does. Using your finger tips press around your liver. If you experience tenderness or pain your liver is sick.

I use to think the "slight" pain would go away by itself and it did, then resurface every now and then. I ignored it and made tons of little excuses; its a tiny little pain but I'm fine otherwise. A biopsy? Not for me, I'm okay and besides biopsy's are for sick people. WRONG! What didn't go away was the tenderness where my tumor had colonized and was growing, growing real fast. Another month and I wouldn't be writing this.

Do both of yourselves a favor and get checked out. The best thing is you will walk away with a clean bill of health. The worse, you will know what is ailing you and begin on the road to recovery.

The metallic taste? I had that during post-op. Caused by the meds. I was asked if I was experiencing a metallic taste when I was being prepped for the OR. Must have been asked a half dozen times by physicians and nurses. Kinda tells me it has to do something with the liver being sick, doesn't it?

Best of luck to both of you.
Avatar universal
Was the metallic taste, then, caused by meds, or by your liver being sick?
Avatar universal
Wouldn't my physician have to order a biopsy?  Given my lab results, he seemed confident that my situation was of no concern... I'm still remaining cautious and open minded, though...

Thanks again for the replies.
Avatar universal
Before my transplant I had the metallic taste off and on for motnhs. Thinking back, I ignored the taste when it was light but when it got stronger it grabbed my attention. I blew it off thinking it was my diet, the herbs I was taking, etc. I was just making excuses to myself so I didn't have to deal with it.

The 1st week after surgery I didn't eat much. First two days I I couldn't have food nor liquids. I was pumped full of super heavy duty pain, anti rejection, anti-anti infection meds. The 3rd day, I sipped water and smelled a turkey sandwich - which smelled like new tin foil. I put it back on the tray. Second day I had a bite of turkey sandwich which tasted like new tin foil...I sapt it out.  My nurses just grinned (they've seen my disgusted look a hundreds of times). It took a solid week for me to build up to eating half a sandwich. Yep, this was my entire meal for the day. Lost 22 lbs in two weeks...woo hoo. At 5'7", went from 154 lbs down to 132. The metallic taste lasted for two weeks then my body adjusted to the medications. Its gone now, thank god.

Whenever you get labs (blood work) get a copy of your results so you can see for yourself where you stand. I have a copy of every single lab work from day one. Docs look at low or high scores but never something that is borderline. These are what you want to catch and discuss with your attending physician on how to improve on them along with, of course, your abnormal scores. Go here for good medical explanations http://www.medterms.com/script/main/hp.asp

And, yes your GI has to order the biopsy. Get this done. And get a ct scan with contrast to rule out HCC. A biopsy does not always state a lesion is brewing on your liver, but a ct w/contrast finds it.

There are two methods of biopsy's; the old method of sticking  a straw size needle into you between your lower right side rib cage into the liver is still used. This feels like sticking your finger in bread dough and withdrawing it slowly, very slowly. Very, very uncomfortable, and, yes, you must get a good strong dose of pain medication. The new method uses ultra sound to locate a good spot on the liver, you get a shot of lidocaine (a local), then using a spring loaded mechanical needle its over and done with in a split second. You feel absolutley nothing...no pain.
Avatar universal
wow i have gilbert's syndrome ugt type, and this has been happening to me past few weeks feeling really strange light headed confused and sickly, i was lay on my back with my lap top on my belly surfing the net and i felt an internal twitching coming from my mid stomach area, a few seconds later i felt really clear headed and was able to read and comprehend what i was reading really fast it was awesome! and then i got the metallic taste in my mouth and at the same time that happened i wasnt able to read as well or as quickly, im sure it has to be small bile stones in the liver ducts and pressure building up and that blowing out lots of bile into the circulation, one thing it did do though is give me a glimpse of how intelligent i can potentially be if i can sort this problem out somehow!....
Are you still in this forum? Want to ask you if this problem has been solved
Really? Hmm I do believe that you ...Gilbert syndrome... is not to blame.i think you have Ebola Zaire?
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