Shattering the Silence: Unveiling the Quiet Epidemic of NAFLD and NASH on International NASH Day
MARKHAM, ON, June 7, 2023 /CNW/ - Sentrex Health Solutions Inc., a leading provider of health services in Canada, invites Canadians to join in marking International NASH Day on Thursday June 8th. This special day is dedicated to raising awareness about non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and its severe form, non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). By shining a spotlight on these conditions, we can encourage early detection, prevention, and treatment strategies, ultimately improving patient outcomes.
NAFLD and NASH are emerging public health concerns which currently affect over 115 million people worldwide1. In Canada alone, a recent Canadian study projected a 20% increase in the frequency of NAFLD by 20302. Individuals with metabolic conditions, like Type 2 Diabetes are particularly at risk, with estimates suggesting that 50-70% may also have NAFLD3. These numbers highlight the urgent need for increased awareness and proactive measures to identify at-risk individuals. Early detection and intervention are crucial in preventing disease progression and improving patient outcomes.
NAFLD and NASH occur when excess fat accumulates in the liver, leading to inflammation and possible liver damage. Unfortunately, these conditions often exhibit minimal or no symptoms in their early stages, emphasizing the importance of raising awareness about their seriousness. Left untreated, NAFLD can progress to NASH, which can cause severe complications such as cirrhosis, liver cancer, and even liver failure.
Dr. Paul Marotta, a hepatologist in London, Ontario with expertise in NAFLD/NASH, highlights the significance of proactive case-finding using advanced diagnostic tools like transient elastography (Fibroscan®). This non-invasive procedure enables early detection of liver fibrosis, allowing healthcare providers to implement appropriate management strategies promptly. "Timely identification of individuals with NAFLD or NASH is crucial in preventing the progression of liver disease and reducing the burden on healthcare resources," says Dr. Marotta. "Screening high-risk individuals, such as those with obesity, diabetes, or metabolic syndrome, allows for early intervention strategies that can significantly improve patient outcomes."
Robert Urbanic, Director of Provider Solutions (Hepatology) at Sentrex, encourages individuals with known risk factors to talk to their doctor about NAFLD and consider a one-time test like Fibroscan®. Robert states, "Unfortunately, there is very low awareness among Canadian healthcare professionals about fatty liver disease and NASH – the more serious stage of the disease. This is an emerging public health issue that needs more efforts devoted to increasing awareness of the disease. By increasing awareness through education, we can make a meaningful impact on liver health and the well-being of our communities."
As part of their ongoing commitment to public health, Sentrex Health Solutions encourages all Canadians, particularly those with risk factors such as obesity, diabetes, and sedentary lifestyles, to discuss the importance of liver health with their healthcare providers. Proactive screening and the adoption of a healthy lifestyle, including regular exercise and a balanced diet, are vital in mitigating the risks associated with NAFLD and NASH.
About Sentrex Health Solutions: Sentrex Health Solutions is a Canadian company that specializes in patient support services across several therapeutic areas, including Hepatology. We are passionate about improving the lives of patients living with or at-risk of developing liver disease.
About International NASH Day: International NASH Day is an annual public education campaign dedicated to raising awareness about non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), a severe form of fatty liver disease. Held on June 8th this year, this global initiative aims to educate the public, healthcare professionals, and policymakers about the growing prevalence and impact of NASH on individuals and communities worldwide. For more information, visit https://www.international-nash-day.com
Younossi ZM, Koenig AB, Abdelatif D, Fazel Y, Henry L, Wymer M. Global epidemiology of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease-meta-analytic assessment of prevalence, incidence, and outcomes. Hepatology. 2016;64(1):73–84
Swain MG, Ramji A, Patel K, et al. Burden of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease in Canada, 2019–2030: a modelling study. CMAJ Open. 2020;8(2):E429–36
Younossi ZM, Golabi P, de Avila L, et al. The global epidemiology of NAFLD and NASH in patients with type 2 diabetes: a systematic review and meta-analysis. J Hepatol. 2019;71(4):793-801.
SOURCE Sentrex Health Solutions
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