Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease: The role of the nurse

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Abstract

Obesity is a frequent cause of morbidity in the Western world, and its prevalence has doubled since 1980. It is well known that conditions such as cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes can be serious consequences of obesity. However, less is known about whether the liver may also be affected by the obesity epidemic. Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is present in more than a quarter of the adult Western population, and the prevalence is increasing among both adults and children. NAFLD thus represents a common liver disease in the Western world. This is worrisome, because NAFLD can cause liver inflammation and various stages of fibrosis and eventually result in cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma, which both have a high mortality rate due to related complications. Lifestyle change is the most important aspect in the prevention and treatment of NAFLD, and nurses play an important role in the early detection of NAFLD and the prevention of its possible progression.

Original languageEnglish
JournalGastrointestinal Nursing
Volume18
Issue numberSup6
Pages (from-to)S15-S21
ISSN1479-5248
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2020

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