Creating a free account will enable you to subscribe to our daily and weekly email newsletters, as well as customize your reading experience to show only the categories most relevant to you.
Signing up only take a few minutes, so why not give it a try and see what you've been missing out on.
New research suggests that estrogen protects women with nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) from severe liver fibrosis. According to the study published online in Hepatology, a journal of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases, men are at higher risk of more severe fibrosis compared to women prior to menopause, but liver fibrosis severity is similar in men and post-menopausal women.
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) includes a range of liver disorders from simple fatty liver to inflammation, fibrosis, and cirrhosis. With the rapid rise in obesity, diabetes and metabolic syndrome, the prevalence of NAFLD - the result of insulin resistance - has also steadily increased. In fact, studies suggest that the NAFLD prevalence is 10% to 30%, making it the most common liver disease in the U.S.
"While most NAFLD patients have a mild disease known as fatty liver or hepatic steatosis, some patients present with NASH, which is more severe and increases overall mortality," explains Dr. Ayako Suzuki with the Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System and University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock, the lead author of the present study. "Our study aim was to investigate whether gender and menopause significantly impact fibrosis severity among adult patients with NAFLD."
The research team analyzed data from 541 adults with NASH who were seen at Duke University Liver Clinics and the Duke Metabolic and Weight Loss Surgery Program. The mean age of subjects was 48 years, with 35% of the group being men, 28% pre-menopausal women and 37% post-menopausal women.
Findings indicate that 22% of the cohort had advanced fibrosis. After adjusting for known predictors of fibrosis, the risk for greater fibrosis severity in post-menopausal women and men vs. pre-menopausal women was 1.4-fold and 1.6-fold, respectively. Furthermore, when dividing the cohort at age 50, which is the average age at menopause in the US, the risk for greater fibrosis severity in men vs. women before age 50 was 1.8-fold, while after the age 50 the risk was reduced to 1.2-fold.
"Our findings suggest a protective effect from estrogen against development of severe fibrosis," concludes Dr. Suzuki. "Further study of the impact of estrogen on fibrosis progression in NASH patients in needed."
This study was funded by grants from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (5RC2 AA019399), and the National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Disease (NIDDK) (U01-DK57149 and K23-DK062116).
Authors: Ju Dong Yang, Manal F Abdelmalek, Herbert Pang, Cynthia D Guy, Alastair D Smith, Anna Mae Diehl and Ayako Suzuki.
Hepatology: DOI: 10.1002/hep.26761 - Published online: October 1, 2013.
Article adapted by Medical News Today from original press release. Click 'references' tab above for source.
Visit our Liver Disease / Hepatitis category page for the latest news on this subject.
Please use one of the following formats to cite this article in your essay, paper or report:
Wiley. "Estrogen protects women with NASH from severe liver fibrosis." Medical News Today. MediLexicon, Intl., 1 Nov. 2013. Web.
4 Dec. 2013. <http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/268179>
Wiley. (2013, November 1). "Estrogen protects women with NASH from severe liver fibrosis." Medical News Today. Retrieved from
Please note: If no author information is provided, the source is cited instead.
If you write about specific medications, operations, or procedures please do not name healthcare professionals by name.
For any corrections of factual information, or to contact the our editorial team, please use our feedback form. Please send any medical news or health news press releases to:
Note: Any medical information published on this website is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with a health care professional. For more information, please read our terms and conditions.
This page was printed from: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/268179.php
Visit www.medicalnewstoday.com for medical news and health news headlines posted throughout the day, every day.
© 2004-2013 All rights reserved. MNT (logo) is the registered trade mark of MediLexicon International Limited.