Swollen stomach pbc cirrhosis

Hi all

My GP thinks I might have water on stomach as it is swollen so going for an ultra sound..if I have what is the first step,? I know it is often durietics and also cutting down salt but gp didn't agree re the salt....there was someone on here who managed to keep the water in stomach down very well bit it was a while back..ps my ankles are not swollen. Any advice would be good thx

17 Replies

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  • I didn't know ascites showed on an ultrasound but it's one of my queries as I have one next week 😊

  • I was a bit surprised ..but we will see..does your stomach feel swollen? Good luck for next week

  • I found this

    Ultrasound of the abdomen is the most cost-effective modality to confirm ascites and to detect cirrhosis or malignancy. Ultrasound with Doppler studies may be useful for determining the patency of hepatic and portal veins and should be ordered in all patients if available. Portal vein thrombosis or stenosis of hepatic veins can be detected more accurately with Doppler. A triple phase CT scan or MRI may be needed in some cases such as suspected malignancy. View image A

  • Thanks that's really helpful.....I'll still ask but think mines fat! 😱

  • Hello spoul.

    I am not far off being 53. I am slim (around a stone lighter than I was a decade ago. Not gained any since PBC diagnosis 2010 and not really lost much either). I think as we get older we can be prone to a stomach that's not so, well flat.

    I find that certain times of the day, usually early evening, my stomach seems bigger than when it is first thing in the morning. Mine isn't noticeable as such but some days you can definitely see I have a little bump.

    I have worked alongside retired ladies up until a couple years ago, did for around 17yrs. I know some of them used to have a little grumble about their tummy areas but used to put it down to their years.

    I think it depends on how one's stomach is maybe? Of course any worries that we have with PBC as everyone I am sure also agrees is best addressed with a doctor.

  • Interesting indeed Bobbycat12.

    I know when I had a scan prior to being diagnosed 5 months later (2010) with PBC the consultant actually had the scan in front of him on a screen to go through. He happen to say he could see nothing untoward on it, everything looked pretty much normal and he said he could even make out clear bile ducts.

    Watching a tv programme couple months prior to being diagnosed with PBC, live to air were 2 men - one I think was latter part of his 30s and he was quite weighty, the other early 50s and he was an alcoholic. The ultrasound that both men had there and then whowed the weighty guy to have fatty liver and was pointed out, the early 50s man was said to be in the stage of cirrhosis.

  • Ascites is a condition that can be associated with PBC. I had it recently and ultrasound confirmed. Diuretics were sufficient medication to drain of the fluid. Do be prepared to Pee for Great Britain... my friends mother had it and she was unable to take diuretics as it lowered her potassium levels. She had the ascites drained in hospital and found relief. You will need blood tests to keep checking your potassium levels and I'd suggest new liver function bloods as it may or may not mean PBC progression. Good luck as it is mighty uncomfortable.

  • I can imagine it is! Even slightly swollen it is uncomfortable and all my trousers and jeans hurt.....I also have varices which bled...but are being banded regularly.....and I was only diagnosed with stage 4 earlier this year! Its been all quite fast.

  • i recently went back to my GP with a bloated stomach as I have been having problems and had already had a scan that didn't show anything, apart from a gallstone. I still kept worrying about it, so I went back and I never realised until then the scan would have shown any fluid. Anyway he re examined me and explained the five F's as he put it...... Fat, flatulence, feces, fluid, or foetus. His way of politely saying I was constipated and fat.

  • As most of you know I was diagnosed over 5 years ago and when I presented it was because of the swelling/cough, in fact I just got bigger daily. I think I was probably the exception but the fluids I had were drained from my system twice and both times it was litres of fluid, you would have though someone had turned on a tap. They were able to see it on an ultrasound the difficulty was hitting the right area with the drain for the fluid to start to flow. I now keep it in check with strong water tablets. On leaving hospital the regime was no salt, take the water tablets, plus good old Urso and drink no more than 1.5 litres of total fluid a day; so that included milk in drinks or on cereal just anything that constituted as fluid. That went on for quite a while and if I have any issues now then I do drop back on the fluids and it seems to work. I suspect if you have just fluid on your tummy they will control it with diuretics I was bloated everywhere and I think they would rather not drain if possible.

  • Thank you, that was very helpful.

  • Apologies candy12. It is a serious subject but your observations made me laugh!

  • Hi Bobbycat12, I read somewhere,maybe here, that a way to tell if a big abdomen is fluid or fat is to try to hold your stomach in, if you can it's fat. Also if you lie on your back and push in one side of your abdomen, you can kind of see /feel a wave across your abdomen when you let go ,if it's fluid. I tried it and rightly came up with fat. Not 100% accurate though I'm sure. I was told fluid would show up on a scan.

  • Thanks! Will try it. I am a small build and thin so it might be a good test to try ......I can't seem to put on weight I lost since I have cirrhosis and a big tummy will look very odd!

  • I was diagnosed 2 months ago and had really bad abdominal swelling. I went for food allergy intolerance tests and since cutting 4 things from my diet it has got so much better.

  • Hi, for interest what did you cut out?

  • I showed an intolerance to lactose, garlic, baker's yeast and pineapple. Have cut them all out of my diet and the swelling and bloating improved. Good luck, hope u find something that helps.

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