Why do Diabetes Patients need a Liver Screen?
There is a silent epidemic of Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD) in Ireland and patients with type 2 diabetes, obesity, and high cholesterol are at greater risk of developing this disease which, if undiagnosed and left untreated, may lead to cirrhosis of the liver.
International Clinical Practice Guidelines now recommend that screening for NAFLD should be part of routine work-up in patients with type 2 diabetes, obesity, and metabolic syndrome.
What is Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease?
Fat can build up in the liver due to alcohol consumption and by increasing body weight. When fat makes up more than 10% of the liver’s weight, it is called Fatty Liver Disease. If the extra fat is not caused by drinking too much alcohol, the disease is called Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD).
Who is at risk of NAFLD?
People with certain medical conditions are at higher risk for developing NAFLD, including:
- Type 2 Diabetes
- High Cholesterol
- High Blood Pressure
- High Triglycerides