Fatty Liver Disease Specialist

Fatty liver disease, also known as nonalcoholic fatty liver disease or NAFLD is the most common cause of chronic liver disease affecting 75 to 100 million Americans. Some people with fatty liver disease will progress to a more severe form, nonalcoholic steatohepatitis or NASH. Early detection is critical because 1 in 5 people with NASH will develop cirrhosis and/or liver cancer. Fatty liver disease can be the reason behind abnormal liver tests, chronic fatigue, or other symptoms. Located in Atlanta, Dr. Scott Isaacs provides comprehensive evaluation and treatment of fatty liver disease. To schedule a consultation, call Atlanta Endocrine Associates or book an appointment online.

Fatty Liver Disease Q & A

Fatty Liver Disease Treatment

What is fatty liver disease?

Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease or NAFLD is caused by excess fat that accumulates in the liver, not related to excessive alcohol use. NAFLD is similar to alcoholic liver disease but can happen in people who rarely or never drink. Fatty liver disease is a worldwide epidemic occurring in 1 out of 4 adults. It is the most common cause of end stage liver disease and the number 2 cause for liver transplantation. About 7% of people with NAFLD progress to NASH. When this happens, liver cells become injured and inflamed and form scarring known as fibrosis. Fibrosis leads to cirrhosis and increases the risk for liver cancer. Risk factors for progression include:

What are the symptoms of fatty liver disease?

NAFLD is often a silent disease with few or no symptoms. NAFLD can cause fatigue which may be overlooked during a medical evaluation for tiredness. Other symptoms include nausea, yellowing of the eyes or discomfort in the upper right side of the abdomen.

How is fatty liver disease diagnosed?

NAFLD is suspected by abnormal liver tests, primarily elevated liver enzymes (AST-aspartate aminotransferase, ALT-alanine aminotransferase), high ferritin or low platelets. Suspected NAFLD is then confirmed with an imaging study such as ultrasound, CT or MRI of the abdomen. Traditionally, the diagnosis of NASH has been made by liver biopsy, but this can be painful and expensive. New noninvasive tools have become another way to detect fibrosis in patients with fatty liver disease.

How is fatty liver disease treated?

The management of NAFLD consists of treating the liver disease alongside the associated metabolic conditions such as obesity, diabetes and abnormal cholesterol. Weight loss with a diet plan is one of the most effective treatments for NAFLD while improving all of the metabolic conditions and decreasing the risk of heart disease. Several dietary approaches to NAFLD have been shown to be effective including fast weight loss programs. Although there are no approved drug therapies for NAFLD, several diabetes medications and vitamin E have been shown to be effective. Weight loss medications are also beneficial for NAFLD although there is very little research. A type of weight loss surgery known as metabolic surgery is an effective treatment. New pharmaceutical agents that directly target NASH are in clinical trials. Liver transplantation is also a treatment for patients with end stage liver disease.

To learn more about diagnosis and management of fatty liver disease, call Atlanta Endocrine Associates or schedule an appointment online.

Testimonials

Words from our patients

  • Google

    "My experience was completely wonderful. He took his time to listen to my symptoms and talked to my husband and me about the next step to take."

    Julie H.
  • Google

    "Dr. Isaacs is awesome! He is extremely knowledgeable with a very calming personality. Not once have I felt rushed when speaking with Dr Isaacs. He genuinely cares."

    Tammy G.
  • Google

    "Dr. Isaacs is extremely smart and very well informed about his specialty. He has been very thorough and diligent in his research into my conditions."

    Mike F.
  • Yelp

    "Dr. Isaacs knows how to listen. I never felt rushed, and he has never been condescending or dismissive of my concerns. He is confident and articulate."

    Christopher S.
  • Yelp

    "I have been very happy with Dr. Isaacs. After seeing several endocrinologists, he was the only one who diagnosed and properly treated my thyroid."

    Melanie S.
Location
Atlanta Endocrine Associates
775 Johnson Ferry Road NE
Atlanta, GA 30342
Phone: 404-531-0350
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404-531-0350