Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease refers to a wide spectrum of liver disease. The term nonalcoholic is used because it occurs in individuals who do not consume excessive amounts of alcohol. Dr. Edward Hill tells us more about this condition in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease is a buildup of fat in the liver. This buildup can be harmless, but sometimes it may cause the liver to swell. It is a common condition that has many causes, including some drugs and genetic disorders. The most common causes are obesity, diabetes and high cholesterol levels. It is not caused by drinking alcohol.

If you have nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, you may feel fullness or pain in the right side of the abdomen. Most people do not have any symptoms.

For most people, this disease is harmless and does not cause serious health problems. It usually does not affect how well the liver works. In a few people, the disease may stop the liver from working right.

People with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease usually do not need treatment. The most important thing is to focus on what has led to the disease. Losing weight slowly may reduce the amount of fat in your liver. Losing weight quickly may make it worse.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.