The liver is the largest gland in the body (approximately 1500 grams) and is located in the right upper quadrant of the abdomen. It is glossy in appearance and dark red in color from the rich supply of blood flowing through it. Approximately 25% of the cardiac output flows to the liver. It performs many important functions:
(1)the uptake, storage, and disposal of nutrients (protein, carbohydrates and fat), drugs, toxins and (2)the production of synthetic proteins (critical for blood clotting) and metabolism of substances produced by the body.