Research Points to National Epidemic of Undiagnosed Fatty Liver Disease: Florida Research Institute and Echosens Announce Results at the American College of Gastroenterology
LAKEWOOD RANCH, Fla. & WALTHAM, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- An interim look at an ongoing study of 10,000 patients with no history of liver disease was conducted in community-based endoscopy centers by the Florida Research Institute (FRI), a global leader in disease research, and funded by Echosens, the makers of FibroScan, will be presented at the American College of Gastroenterology (ACG) Annual Meeting, in Philadelphia, PA on October 9th, 2018. This analysis of the first 367 patients indicates that elevated stiffness and Controlled Attenuation Parameter (CAP) scores were present in 9.2 percent of patients evaluated, suggesting a significant rate of undiagnosed steatohepatitis liver disease in the population studied. FibroScan was used as a screening tool to identify patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), with or without advancing fibrosis. NAFLD is an asymptomatic disease that affects up to one in two Americans.
This prospective study evaluated patients undergoing endoscopy procedures between June 2017 and January 2018 versus a matched control of patients not undergoing a liver health assessment. Patients were risk stratified based on FibroScan, which utilizes Vibration Controlled Transient Elastography (VCTE) and CAP, surrogate scores of liver fibrosis and liver fat, respectively. The study team examined electronic medical records within 90 days after the procedure to determine and compare prevalence of NAFLD.
Citing key findings of the study, Guy Neff, M.D., MBA, Director of the Florida Research Institute and principal investigator, states, “Results showed 53 percent of patients studied had excess fat in their livers as identified by the CAP, of which 64 percent likely had grade 3 liver fat, as identified by a CAP score of ≥279 dBm. More concerning, only 43 percent of patients evaluated had what we would consider normal livers (stiffness <7kPa and CAP <248dBm). These results underscore the importance of identifying asymptomatic patients who may be at risk for advancing disease for earlier intervention. It is alarming to see this high prevalence of disease, a dramatic rise from our observations in the last decade and indicative of the critical need for ongoing assessment.”
Woodie Zachry, Ph.D., RPh, Chief Science Officer, Quantym Therapeutic Data, says, “We opted to evaluate the presence of NAFLD in the endoscopy setting to better understand disease prevalence among patients undergoing routine colonoscopies and evaluate the impact of screening on practice workflow. We were pleased to find that a high degree of quality was maintained in the FibroScan examinations, with little burden on the endoscopy practice. In addition to evaluating disease prevalence, the ongoing study seeks to understand potential to use Fibroscan to predict the risk of endoscopic complications, as well as the presence, location and types of polyps in patients identified with NAFLD or NASH versus those with normal liver histology.”
Echosens, the developer of FibroScan®, is an innovative high-technology company offering a full range of products and services supporting physicians in their assessment and management of patients with chronic liver diseases. FibroScan® is supported by over 2,000 peer reviewed publications. http://www.echosens.us/
About Florida Research Institute
Florida Research Institute, is a division of Florida Digestive Health Specialists. Located in Lakewood Ranch, Florida is the leader of Gastroenterology and Hepatology research in western Florida.
About Quantym Therapeutic Data
Quantym Therapeutic Data is a research company that aligns health care with Information Technology. QTD operates a software program that identifies patients suffering from Non-alcoholic Steatohepatitis (NASH).
Mary Spardel, 201-641-1911 x 22