Fatty Liver & Liver Cirrhosis Are At Epidemic Levels!
- 100,000,000 Americans have a fatty liver. Most don't know it.
- 20,000,000 will develop liver fibrosis disease or NAFLD (nonalcoholic fatty liver disease) as a result.
- 5,000,000 million will progress to liver cirrhosis or NASH (nonalcoholic steatohepatitis) and possibly end stage liver failure.
- Some will be lucky enough to be listed for a transplant, the only cure for late stage liver disease, but 30% of those listed will die waiting. Death by liver failure is long and difficult.
- We want to help you avoid this kind of death by helping you understand how you may be killing yourself slowly. And, what you can do about it.
- If you are already ill, we will do our best to help you with that process.
To improve the diagnosis, treatment & support of Americans with fatty liver, NAFLD or NASH through awareness, education, screening and patient advocacy.
We Advocate Early Screening
Typically, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) are silent diseases. They have no symptoms. Even if cirrhosis has developed, there are often no symptoms until the liver has become so damaged that the only option is a liver transplant.
There is currently a quick, easy and economical method to screen for fatty liver disease called a FibroScan. Unfortunately, the current medical standards policy is not to screen for liver disease. And, unless you are sick and have symptoms, insurance probably won't pay for the scan, even if you're lucky enough to have a testing system in your area.
The Fatty Liver Foundation is championing a nationwide program to provide liver screening services in cooperation with Liver Care Canada and Echosens, the manufacturer of Fibroscan, to make it possible for people who have a concern for their liver health to get an inexpensive scan. Since insurance doesn't normally cover screening for people who aren't sick yet, it will be on a private pay basis. However, as a nonprofit foundation, we believe we can deliver this service at an affordable price.
If you would like to watch some very good videos about liver disease,
We Advocate Early Screening
Improving together the medical learning about NASH to better address its causes and consequences, and serve patients.
As a recognized leader in the NASH field, the endowment fund has a responsibility for being proactive in NASH disease awareness.
The NASH Education ProgramTM defines and drives initiatives in collaboration with an independent scientific committee² composed of four international key opinion leaders, well-known and respected in the field, with a footprint in both hepatic and metabolic diseases, and a strong presence in the United States as well as in Europe.
The objective of this public health initiative is to place the practitioner and the patient at the heart of tomorrow's awareness and education actions. It aims at producing essential and relevant scientific and medical knowledge, and at disseminating it towards targeted audiences:
- All physician specialties, going beyond hepato-gastroenterology, i.e. including diabetologists, endocrinologists, obesity specialists, cardiologists, OB-GYN and general practitioners who will all have a key role to play in the clinical management of NASH patients;
- Patients and their families, but also individuals at risk, who all need to understand causes, mechanisms and consequences of the disease, to fully appreciate the importance of an early diagnosis and a treatment well-suited to their condition.
Through this approach, The NASH Education ProgramTM creates opportunities to increase awareness through relevant and impactful education actions. It is obviously open to all key stakeholders in the NASH space who are committed to improving NASH patient care.
Videos from The NASH Education ProgramTM
* NASH: A Major Public Health Issue & Growing Concern
Learn about the vital role of the liver in the body, as well as about NASH, or non-alcoholic steatohepatitis. You will see the progression of the disease from a healthy liver to a liver with steatosis and necro-inflammation, the driving force of the disease, leading to fibrosis and ultimately to life-threatening outcomes such as cirrhosis or liver cancer – both requiring a liver transplant – or cardiovascular disease.
* Why Early Diagnosis is Important
Learn why NASH is growing as a major economical and societal issue for many countries. In fact, since it has a high prevalence and no medication currently available, healthcare systems expenses related to NASH are expected to grow globally. Early diagnosis is a major challenge in NASH management, requiring a simple, cost-effective and non-invasive solution.
* Biopsy: The Gold Standard for Diagnosis
Learn about biopsy, the current gold standard to diagnose NASH in individuals at risk, and the most complete diagnostic solution allowing clinicians to study key characteristics of the disease. Also learn why it is not considered an ideal solution and needs complementary diagnostic tools: mainly due to its low availability, invasiveness and cost.
* What is NASH?
Stephen A. Harrison, MD, Medical Director of Pinnacle Clinical Research, San Antonio, introduces us to NAFLD (Non Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease), and more specifically NASH (Non-alcoholic Steatohepatitis). He explains the definition of the disease, as well as its characteristics & the risks induced by its progression. He also highlights how the disease is related to the double epidemic of obesity and diabetes.
* Who is at Risk?
Mary E. Rinella, MD (Associate Professor of Medicine, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago) describes who are the patients at risk of developing NAFLD and NASH, as well as the link between NASH and cardiovascular events, the ultimate consequences of the disease, and the importance of a multidisciplinary approach to be successful in the fight against NASH.
* Improving Access to NASH Diagnosis
Arun J. Sanyal , MD (Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center, Richmond) explains that NASH is under diagnosed because a biopsy is usually necessary to confirm diagnosis. Because NASH is a silent disease and most patients are asymptomatic until late stages of the disease, it is crucial that a new, easy-to-use, accessible non-invasive diagnostic tool becomes available soon.
* How to Resolve NASH
Kenneth Cusi, MD (Chief of the Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism at the University of Florida, Gainesville) explains how beneficial weight loss is for NASH patients. But most people struggle to lose weight, and more importantly keep it off. Therefore, because of the prevalence of NASH and its rapid progression, increasing awareness around NASH could help to better manage patients, but that new treatments remain a priority.
* NASH: The Future
Vlad Ratziu, MD (Professor of Hepatology at the Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital, Paris) explains that resolving NASH (inflammation and ballooning), the underlying cause of cirrhosis, is a recommended endpoint for clinical trials. He tells us more about the key requirements for an anti-NASH drug, especially the importance of safety and tolerability on top of efficacy.
Want to know more about clinical trials? Here are some short videos from our partner Antidote.