A study by researchers from the University of Edinburgh and the University of Southampton reveals that having type 2 diabetes dramatically increases the risk of chronic liver disease in both men and women.
Published in the Journal of Hepatology in 2016, the study posits that as incidents of type 2 diabetes continue to rise, hospital admissions for treatment of chronic liver disease must rise as well. It points out the necessity of further research to determine if screening for liver diseases is necessary for all type 2 diabetes patients.
Using national health records, the study included data from over 99 percent of the population of Scotland during a 10-year period. Researchers discovered that the risk of chronic liver disease was three times higher in men with diabetes than in men without diabetes. Although significantly fewer women than men contract diabetes, in women with diabetes, the risk of liver disease was five times higher than in women without diabetes.
Researchers emphasize that chronic liver disease associated with type 2 diabetes, for the most part, is not related to alcohol consumption. Instead, most people with diabetes who contract liver disease have a condition known as non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, or NAFLD, which involves the accumulation of fat inside liver cells. The presence of NAFLD increases the risk of mortality through liver cancer or cirrhosis.
There are few treatment options for NAFLD other than maintaining a healthy diet and exercising on a regular basis. People with NAFLD should also avoid consuming alcohol, which exacerbates complications of the disease. Overall, the study points out the importance of healthy lifestyles for people with and without type 2 diabetes and chronic liver disease.
The findings of this study illuminate the need for further research concerning the link between type 2 diabetes and chronic liver disease. Further research is ongoing to find a cure for all forms of diabetes. You can help with your donations.
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