Have TWO friends? Chances are, one of you has a Fatty Liver.

This headline sounds like hysteria, but the sobering reality is that nearly a third of the population of the USA has NAFLD.  This is just one of the many facts presented on this outstanding NASH brochure.  I love the simplicity of the Q&A nature of this factoid, and have been speaking with the author, Tony Villiotti.

Tony is a NASH transplant survivor and the founder of the NASH Education Corporation, a Pittsburgh-based non-profit focusing on increasing awareness and providing educational materials for NASH.  I’ve been wanting to write about patients living with NASH for quite some time and Tony was generous enough to agree to an interview for a profile piece, the first ever on NASH AWARE.

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One of Tony’s goals is to get this brochure placed in health care locations, health fairs, and other places where it can reach a wide audience.

Continue reading “Have TWO friends? Chances are, one of you has a Fatty Liver.”

Modest alcohol consumption may REDUCE mortality in patients with NAFLD

A new study from New York Presbyterian Hospital has some eyebrow-raising findings.  We already know that drinking coffee is good for the liver, but you would expect to find less evidence of a positive relationship with alcohol.  Yes, there have been plenty of studies that show a glass of wine can be good for you, but never one that highlighted an actual positive link.

This study goes even further and finds that moderate drinking can actually lead to a reduced mortality risk in patients with NAFLD.  Wut??? Continue reading “Modest alcohol consumption may REDUCE mortality in patients with NAFLD”

A Star in the Sky: Coping with the sudden loss of a loved one

My mother passed away suddenly four years ago this month after a short battle with late-stage NASH.  Which is impossible, but somehow true.  Just a few days before being diagnosed with NASH she was celebrating with my wife and I at a housewarming party at the Shore.  A picture of her from that party occupies a prominent place on our fridge; the last picture of her before our lives were all changed forever.

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Mom just a few days before she fell into a coma as a result of liver failure.

Continue reading “A Star in the Sky: Coping with the sudden loss of a loved one”

Viking Therapeutics delivers promising results in NALFD trial

It’s another promising result from one of the dozens of bio-pharmaceutical companies trying to find treatments for fatty liver disease.  Viking Therapeutics announced results from an early study of NAFLD patients that exceeded expectations yesterday, sending the stock soaring 122%.

trial Continue reading “Viking Therapeutics delivers promising results in NALFD trial”

The Thyroid’s link to NASH

I lost my mother suddenly to late-stage NASH when she was only 62 years old.  The search for answers and meaning has led me to working with the American Liver Foundation and starting this blog.  One thing that has become increasingly clear to me was that my mom’s decades of hypothyroidism could have been a major cause of her progression to NASH.  Now, a new meta-study examining 18 years of data has concluded that those patients with primary hypothyroidism are at a 42% increased risk for developing NAFLD, the precursor to NASH. Continue reading “The Thyroid’s link to NASH”

New treatment restarts liver regeneration

One of the coolest things about the liver is that it is the only major organ capable of regenerating itself.  In fact, during a living donor liver transplant, as little as 1/3 of the living donor’s liver is transplanted and grows back to full size in the recipient within only a few weeks time.  When you think about it, this makes perfect sense.  The liver’s job is to detoxify our bodies, which means that they are constantly processing toxins that would otherwise kill us.  Whether it is alcohol, drugs, or simple byproducts of food that we ingest, the liver has to be able to handle removing them from our bloodstream to keep us healthy.   Continue reading “New treatment restarts liver regeneration”