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Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease in a Jamaican Patient Population



Objectives: This study determined the prevalence and clinical features of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease over a 6 year period in a patient population.

Methods: Patients diagnosed with fatty liver disease by ultrasound and/or liver biopsy between June 2006 to June 2012 at the University Hospital of the West Indies, Jamaica were reviewed.

Results: There were 384 cases of fatty liver disease identified and 230 patients were included in the study. The overall prevalence was 2.4%. The patient population consisted of 54% females and 41% males with a mean age of 53 years for females and 51 for males. Increased BMI was present in 85.5% with a preponderance of females (63%). The risk factors identified were increasing age, obesity, diabetes mellitus (39%) and dyslipidaemia (21%). Hypertension was present in 51% of patients. Hepatomegaly was found in10.7% of patients. Elevated serum AST was present in 21.2% of patients tested and elevated ALT in 3.7%. Liver biopsy in ten patients revealed macro-vesicular fatty changes in 40% of cases, 10% had steatohepatitis and 10% had evidence of advanced fibrosis.  An underlying malignancy was present in 12.8% of patients.

Conclusion: The prevalence of fatty liver disease is low with ultrasound detection in this Jamaican patient population. Obesity, male gender, advancing age, diabetes and dyslipidaemia were significant associated factors. Further studies are required to ascertain the full extent and outcome of this disease in Jamaica.  

21 Aug, 2015
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e-Published: 28 Dec, 2015
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