There are no approved drugs to treat nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.
But in a new study from Duke Health, researchers found that controlling blood sugar over time may help decrease the risk of liver scarring and disease progression.
They found the average three-month blood glucose levels of patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease influenced their chance of having more severe scarring in the liver, which can lead to liver failure.
Severe liver disease related to fatty liver is on the rise. It’s becoming one of the leading causes of liver transplants and liver mortality.
In the study, the team examined the documented glucose levels of 713 adult patients with fatty liver disease prior to a liver biopsy.
The team found that higher average blood glucose levels in the year leading up to a liver biopsy were linked to more severe swelling of liver cells.
For every 1% of the increase in hemoglobin HbA1c (a measure of average glucose levels) in the year preceding biopsy, the chances for severe fibrosis rose by 15%.
Similarly, researchers also found that those with moderate glucose control over a period of five years, rather than good control, had more severe swelling of liver cells and a higher likelihood of having advanced liver scarring.
These findings are particularly important for patients with diabetes because many people nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.
The team hopes more people treating diabetes can be aware of fatty liver.
The findings may lead clinicians to reconsider their diabetes treatment approach to prescribe diabetes medications that are known to both improve glucose control and promote weight loss.
If you care about diabetes, please read studies about eating eggs in breakfast may benefit people with type 2 diabetes and findings of this popular dietary supplement may help fight type 2 diabetes.
For more information about liver health, please see recent studies about common beer plant may help treat colon and liver cancer and results showing that this statin drug could lower liver cancer risk.
The study is published in the journal Hepatology. One author of the study is Anastasia-Stefania Alexopoulos, M.B.B.S.
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