Stomach bloating describes the sensation of your belly feeling swollen, commonly caused by excess gas. However, the condition could signify a more serious illness.
A swollen tummy can, at times, be the result of an abnormal build-up of fluid in the abdomen (medically known as ascites).
The most common cause of ascites, as cited by Guts UK – a charity committed to fighting digestive diseases – is liver cirrhosis.
The NHS explains cirrhosis is scarring of the liver.
The liver’s main function is to filter blood coming from the digestive tract.
The NHS states the liver also “stores glycogen, a carbohydrate that produces short-term energy”.
The organ also “makes bile, which helps digest fats”, and “makes substances that clot the blood”.
Drinking an excessive amount of alcohol over 10 years or more can damage the liver.