I AGREE TO USE MD STAT FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY, THAT NO DOCTOR PATIENT RELATIONSHIP IS FORMED BY MY PARTICIPATION IN THIS EXCHANGE, AND I UNDERSTAND THAT MY QUESTION AND ANSWER(S) WILL BE POSTED ON THE WEBSITE AND WILL BE VIEWABLE BY VISITORS TO THE SITE.: Yes, I agree.This morning, while lying flat on my back in bed, I noticed that if I press around the area of my my solar plexus I can feel something rather firm and shelf-like. It doesn't hurt but was a little tender to pressure. It seems to be my liver, but why would it be firm? I have been overindulging in alcohol for the last month or so (I know, I will stop) so could that be a cause? Should I worry? I was recently laid off and do not have health insurance so am reluctant to visit a physician right now... Thank you for any input.
How tall are you (feet and inches)?: 6 feet, 0 inches
What is your weight in pounds?: 225
How old are you?: 44
How long has this been going on?: A few days
Describe associated symptoms not listed above: Odd firm structure, maybe my liver, in upper abdomen. Easily palpated.
What have you done so far to remedy this condition? Please include tests and relevant studies here. Nothing
Please list any chronic medical problems and also list any prior surgery: Cholecystectmoy (laproscopic) two years ago
Check all conditions present in your immediate family... Diabetes
Please list any medication allergies that you have : : None
Please list any medications you are currently taking (and dosage if known) :: Metformin ER 1,000mg/day
Are you currently using or do you have a history of tobacco use?: No
Are you currently using or do you have a history of illegal drug use?: No
Please describe your alcohol consumption :: Daily
Is the structure I feel my liver?
Is it abnormal for it to feel firm/hard?
Is it abnormal for the liver to be easily palpated?
Very hard to say what this is. If you have been a regular drinker for many years you may indeed be feeling your liver, as a long drinking history WILL cause liver enlargement, and, in many, Cirrhosis.
I understand your reluctance to see a doctor because of money issues, but you really need to get an ultrasound of your liver. This will tell if it is enlarged and if you have cirrhosis. If you do, you MUST change your alcohol habit and now.
If this is not your liver or cirrhosis then the alcohol is not so important, at least right now. But it is hard to imagine, from the way you describe this, that this would be something OTHER than your liver.
An ultrasound is not expensive. It is the test you need, along with a good exam by a good physician.
Good luck, and if you have further questions please ask them in the comments section.