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Perspectives

Nonalcoholic fatty liver: an independent predictor of heart disease?

Tissa A Tandiari, Andrew Wilson, Martin Weltman

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Abstract

According to recent emerging data, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease has been suggested to be a predictor of heart disease independent of the metabolic syndrome and traditional cardiovascular risk factors.

Key Points

  • Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the major cause of chronic liver disease.
  • NAFLD is the hepatic representation of the metabolic syndrome.
  • Ischaemic heart disease (IHD) is the main cause of mortality among patients with NAFLD, and there is a higher prevalence of IHD in patients with NAFLD than in those without the disorder.
  • Statin therapy is generally safe in patients with NAFLD.
  • GPs have a key role in the diagnosis and management of patients with NAFLD.

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