British Liver Trust
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Extreme tiredness

I was supposed to start work this morning at 5.30am but for the 4th time in as many months I physically couldn't get out of bed. I have chronic cirrhosis & often spend the whole day in bed. No one seems to understand and they think I'm lazy but it's out of my control. My doctor said my liver is compensating well & my bloods are great so I shouldn't be tired. I thought surley if my liver is ruined and producing great blood results it's obviously working extremely hard to keep me alive. Does anyone else on here have similar problems? Yesterday I almost fell asleep standing up and felt physically sick from trying to keep awake. I'm going to disclose to work my condition or I'll lose my job. I just want to hear if you have similar problems?

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My husband was in the same position as you. It took 6 months of having bloods and consultations with an endocrinologist who could not find the reason for his tiredness. But certain hormone levels were out side of their normal parameters. It was not until he had an abdomen ultrasound that he was found to have cirrhosis but with normal liver function levels.

He was very tired all the time and actually was certified sick by his GP. After the 6 months sick pay his company had paid ,his case was then passed to the government for long term sick pay.

This is now called ESA. As his profession was a long distance lorry driver he was no longer allowed to drive and remained on ESA payments and disability until after his transplant.

So it may be possible for your doctor to sign you off as being sick.

Good Luck

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The chronic fatigue is and always has been my hubbies major symptom. He has disrupted nights sleep and any day time naps don't actually re-energise him. His consultants have always said they can't explain the fatigue other than saying often that 'the liver robs you of energy'. There is no way my hubby could still work - he was welder in heavy engineering. He no longer drives due to the fatigue which is not only a physical tiredness but a mental fatigue - thoroughly draining leading to concentration issues and more.

It is a genuine side effect of cirrhosis even in a compensated state which is where my hubby is now.

He is on ESA and PIP and I am able to claim Carers Credit (National Insurance payments) due to caring for him and being unable to go out to work full time.

Sadly when they delisted hubby from transplant list is was because his blood results were too good and they said they can't do 'quality of life' transplants as there was no guarantee that a transplant would rectify the fatigue issue.

Its tough when others don't understand the effects of your illness - we are even seeing it with family this week as my father in law died and the family are all expecting way too much of hubby with doing the planning, arranging and running about and don't grasp his health situation at all. No other family members are helping at all just hubby and I trying to do everything.

All the best to you.

Katie

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I think if I ever hear another health professional say, although you have cirrhosis, your bloods are fine and therefore you should feel fine, I will scream.

If your liver is damaged, it cannot provide energy the same way it used to. It also cannot store energy for long periods, so that person has to eat little and often and that includes when they are not really hungry.

That is why your are tired, because your body is having to rest, because of lack of energy. Unfortunately, it is a consequence of cirrhosis. Ask your gastro what he thinks and ask your GP to refer you to an acute dietician at your local hospital to give you dietary advice.

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I can't believe you get up at that time with our condition.Our bodies are so tired from working so hard.Added to my meds I take milk thistle 6 grams twice a day and a probiotic.i have been on milk thistle for years and I am much tiredet if I don't take it.Theres no way I could work.I feel so bad for you.I feel like I have a hangover and want to be sick if I am really tired even though have never really drank.I fell asleep the other day eating my breakfast.good luck telling work.Cathy-anne

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I also start work early like yourself and know exactly what your feeling.i can go 2-3 months solid & feel relatively good although tired at end of day,and then out of nowhere I simply can't get up if I do I just want to sleep and ache all over .i have cirrhosis & 3 cancerous tumours and am on transplant list.like you my bloods are am told very encouraging and in fact if they relied on blood tests they wouldn't of picked up the cancer it was MRI so am very lucky they keep a close eye on me.fatigue & tiredness is probably a sign of your liver struggling or possibly slowly getting worse . As there is no current cure for cirrhosis it's important it's managed,a good healthy diet really does help.

Hope you feel better soon

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i had severe tiredness too, luckily i live alone and i'm retired so i slept most of the time - because my liver is damaged i don't make vitamins anymore so need iron /blood transfusion and other vitamins , also i get anemia --i stopped eating salt-- that really helped when i was first admitted to a&e i had 19 ltrs of fluid drained--now it's zero, my kidney function is stage 4-- v/ poor-- i,m much improved and far less tired--make sure you eat well-- i ate steak every night(protene) for months --just the cheap stuff--and NO SALT or salty food like ready meals---does anyone suffer itchy skin on here??

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Hi

I suffer itchy skin and take fexofenadine which is really good. I also have extreme fatigue due to lack of sleep cos of pain I made myself a brew one night just over a week ago, nodded off while holding it and got a severe burn to my right thigh which was agony and still is very painful. I need to go and get it dressed every other day. You all take care. Lots of love Lynne xxxx

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regarding the itchy skin ,try anti histomine pills --this works for me--marvellous releif --i buy the cheap ones from lidl only 90 pence for 12-- piriton is much more expensive and is exactly the same --it's called cetrizine--or loratadine-- one is in a blue pack tother in a green pack --if it works it takes about a week to get the first results--it doesn't make me tired -u can take it when u go to bed anyway

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The liver, kidneys, underactive (hypo) thyroid and chemo can all cause fatigue for sure. However, there are actual sleeping diseases as well. I had been diagnosed with narcolepsy before cancer and before liver disease. Now I have no evidence of either of those two diseases but still have the tiredness, so clearly some can be tired from an actual sleeping disease. The irony for me is I have overactive thyroid, which dr says usually makes people hyper, overactive and high energy as well as easy to lose weight; now of those symptoms here. Go figure, the body and the mind can both be contradictory. So if you have already had thyroid checked and it's fine, there are several sleeping diseases that can be considered.

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