Did you know that the liver is the largest abdominal organ in your body? The skin is perhaps the largest because it weighs a lot when taken together. But the liver is a solid abdominal organ that takes up a significant portion of the abdominal cavity. But where is it located exactly? Can you feel the liver with your hands?
In this article, we will delimitate the liver and its functions. We will talk about the location, interesting anatomy facts, and how it works.
Where is your liver
The liver is located in the upper right portion of the abdomen. This area is known as the right hypochondrium, and it is located below the ribcage on your right side. This is where liver pain is usually found, but it is often dull and difficult to delimitate because the organ does not have nerve terminals of its own. Instead, it relies on nerve terminals located on the inner abdominal wall.
However, the location of the liver is not always the same. The organ moves with breathing because it is attached to a breathing muscle called the diaphragm. This is the most important and the largest breathing muscle, located below the lungs and above the stomach and the liver. The diaphragm separates the thoracic and abdominal cavities.
The diaphragm is not a straight muscle. Instead, it has a dome shape that goes inside the thoracic cavity. The liver adopts the same form, which is why almost all of the liver is covered by the ribcage when we breathe out. Thus, to examine your liver and touch the borders of the organ, you may need to breathe all the way in, and even after doing so, you might not feel anything in particular because there are multiple layers of skin and muscle in between.
In most cases, the liver borders are not easily felt with your hands unless you have an enlarged liver. In such cases, the organ line can be felt below the ribcage, even when you’re not breathing in.