Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease increasing
NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted May 16, 2005
Alcohol remains the most common cause of abnormal liver function, but obesity is increasingly linked to this condition, according to a study of residents of a town in Southern Italy published in this month's Hepatology.
Obesity has long been a leading cause of this problem in the United States, and researchers say this study is evidence that the rest of the world is catching up.
Researchers screened over 1,500 randomly selected residents for abnormal liver values, hepatitis B and C and alcohol consumption. About 12% had liver function tests that were not quite right. Of these, 46% were caused by excessive alcohol consumption. About 20% were caused by infection with hepatitis B and C, and 24% were caused by excess weight.
Note: This item originally appeared at http://www.ama-assn.org/amednews/2005/05/16/hlbf0516.htm.