Children with hemochromatosis have problems breaking down iron. Iron builds up in the liver and causes liver enlargement. Then, other organs become affected. The disease may lead to the development of diabetes, skin pigment changes, cardiac problems, arthritis, cirrhosis of the liver, liver cancer, hypopituitarism, chronic abdominal pain, severe fatigue and increased risk of certain bacterial infections.
How This Hurts the Liver
Small amounts of iron are normally stored in the liver, kidneys and heart. Excess iron can damage these organs.
Neonatal hemochromatosis is when the liver becomes diseased while a baby is in his mother’s womb, which can lead to endstage liver disease at birth.
The goal of treatment is to remove excess iron from the body and to give supportive treatment to damaged organs.