*EMBARGOED All research presented at the 2019 ACG Annual Scientific Meeting and Postgraduate Course is strictly embargoed until Monday, October 28, 2019, at 8:00 am CDT.
P1522 Fibroscan Is a Feasible and Useful Point-Of-Care Tool to Assess Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease Severity in Children
Author Insight from Oladuni D. Cummings-John, MD, Texas Liver Institute
What’s new here and important for clinicians?
With the ever rising and alarming rates of obesity amongst youth and adolescent populations, I believe it’s becoming extremely important and worthwhile for clinicians to not only have a means of identifying but of monitoring the liver health of their younger patients. Beyond developing diabetes, high cholesterol or heart disease, many individuals that display these metabolic syndrome type risk factors are at risk for liver damage as well. At the Texas Liver Institute, we are seeing a growing number of children and young adults who without proper surveillance and lifestyle modifications are at great risk of continuing on to more advanced liver pathologies including nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) and full blown cirrhosis. The long term consequences can be quite devastating. Having a means of quantifying liver steatosis and stiffness has allowed a way for clinicians to efficiently monitor children with this increasing prevalent yet highly modifiable disease.
What do patients need to know?
I often hear from adult patients how for years they’ve been told they have a “fatty liver” but nothing was ever done about it. I think it’s important for young patients and their parents to know that fatty liver disease is something that we’re starting to see take affect even earlier in life. Raising awareness and providing education on the importance of proper nutrition and exercise is something that should be implemented early on. Forming healthy habits in adolescence will have a lasting effect on a child’s health for years to come.
Oladuni D. Cummings-John, MD, Texas Liver Institute
dunidesiree [at] gmail [dot] com
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