Cases of fatty liver disease on the rise

Kathmandu, June 22

Cases of fatty liver disease are on the rise in Kathmandu valley.

According to Bir Hospital, 25 per cent of patients visiting the hospital are found suffering from the fatty liver disease.

Unhealthy lifestyle, intake of oily and spicy food items, lack of exercise and alcohol intake are to blame for the rise in cases of the fatty liver disease, said Dr Bikash Jaishi, consultant hepatologist at Bir Hospital. To make matters worse, people lack awareness and visit hospital only when the disease is at its advanced stage.

One must adopt a healthy lifestyle and have balanced diet that includes grains, dairy products, fruits and vegetables to prevent the disease. Fatty liver leads to fibrosis — formation of excess fibrous connective tissue. This leads to stiffness of the liver.

The hospital has recently procured fibroscan machine, which is used to assess stiffness of the liver.

“It is also useful in finding the amount of fat in the liver. Depending on the amount of fat in the liver, we advise patients to either take medicines or lose their weight,” said the doctor.

One should stay away from alcohol and tobacco to keep the liver healthy. Physical exercise is equally important, according to the doctor. Intake of painkillers and paracetamol tablets, drugs with steroids should be avoided to keep the liver healthy, added the doctor.

The liver is the second largest organ in the body after the brain. The liver performs functions related to digestion, immunity, metabolism and storage of nutrients within the body. Without it, the tissues of the body die quickly.