Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a leading cause of chronic liver disease in the USA.
Understanding the epidemiology of NAFLD, with specific focus on individuals with hepatic fibrosis is important to guide healthcare resource planning.
Dr Wong and colleagues from California, USA evaluated prevalence and predictors of hepatic fibrosis among US adults with NAFLD.
The researchers performed a cross-sectional study using data from the updated 2011-2014 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, a national, stratified, multistage sampling survey of non-institutionalized US adults age ≥ 20.
|The overall prevalence of NAFLD among US adults was 22%|
|Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics|
METAVIR F2 or greater fibrosis among individuals with NAFLD was assessed using AST to Platelet Ratio Index (APRI) score > 0.7.
METAVIR F3 or greater fibrosis was assessed using NAFLD fibrosis score (NFS) > 0.676 and FIB-4 score > 3.25.
The researchers found that overall prevalence of NAFLD among US adults was 22%, representing 52 million adults.
Among individuals with NAFLD, the team observed a 24% prevalence of ≥F2 fibrosis, representing 12 million individuals.
The researchers also observed a 2%-10% prevalence of ≥F3 fibrosis, representing as many as 5 million adults.
The team noted that increasing age, obesity and concurrent diabetes mellitus were associated with increased risk of ≥F3 fibrosis.
Dr Wong's team concludes, "NAFLD represents a major healthcare burden among US adults with as many as 5 million adults estimated to have NAFLD with ≥F3 fibrosis."
"Age and the components of the metabolic syndrome are independently associated with higher risk of fibrosis."