Tag Archives: fatty liver
Research Studies for Fatty Liver Disease Announced: Liver Specialists of Texas-UPDATED

Research Studies for Fatty Liver Disease Announced: Liver Specialists of Texas-UPDATED

Fatty Liver Research

Fatty Liver Research

I am happy to announce that we have three research studies for those suffering from fatty liver disease.

If interested, please call our research staff at the following numbers:

Christina: 713-634-5110
Coby: 713-634-5103
Liver Specialists of Texas Main Number: 713-794-0700
On-Line form: CLICK HERE to send our team at Liver Specialists of Texas a message regarding your interest in the research studies.

Kindly tell them you are interested in the FATTY LIVER RESEARCH STUDIES.

Details of the studies are posted below.

Study 1
A Multicenter, Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo Controlled Phase III Study to Evaluate the Efficacy and Safety of Elafibranor in Patients with Non Alcoholic Steatohepatitis (NASH) and Fibrosis.

Study 2
A Multicenter, Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Phase 2b Clinical Trial Evaluating Emricasan, An Orally-Active Pan-Caspase Inhibitor, in Patients with Biopsy-Confirmed Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis (NASH).

Study 3
A Multicenter, Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, 2-Part, 12 Week Study to Assess Safety, Tolerability, and Efficacy of LJN452 , in Patients Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis (NASH).

Each of the three studies have slightly different inclusion criteria, and this will be determined by our research staff to see which study you would best be selected for.

For all of the three research studies, once accepted in the study, all of your medical care related to the study will be free of charge to you. This will include clinic visits, laboratory tests, specific scans, and liver biopsy if needed. All study medicines will be supplied to you. After the study is completed, you will be followed afterwards for an additional several months. Each study will also provide patients with a stipend for each visit that is required. Specific details will be explained is the study documents you will receive if selected.

Here is a short video explaining fatty liver disease in more detail.

Thank you.

Dr. Joe Galati

 

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Three Questions About Fatty Liver: Dr. Rashid Khan Explains

Three Questions About Fatty Liver: Dr. Rashid Khan Explains

Fatty Liver DiseaseDr. Rashid Khan adds additional information to better understanding fatty liver disease.

As a follow up to my last blog entry on fatty liver disease a few months ago, I thought I would highlight three common questions patients with this condition ask.

1. “Doctor, I don’t drink any alcohol, how can I get fatty liver, I thought that was something you get if you drink?”

A common misconception amongst patients I frequently encounter. It used to be thought that fatty liver disease was usually caused by excessive alcohol intake. However, it now recognized that obesity and diabetes could cause fatty liver. As obesity and diabetes have become more common, so has fatty liver disease.

2. “Does it cause any complications?”

Never ceases to amaze me that most if not all patients with fatty liver in my office do not seem to know the risk of progression to cirrhosis. They seemed genuinely surprised when I mention this fact. Further ,fatty liver disease may add to the already high risk of heart disease if you are obese or have diabetes.

3. “What is the treatment?”

The best treatment is weight loss. Weight loss has a very direct effect: As people lose weight, the fatty liver becomes less fatty.There’s been some research into using diabetes drugs and vitamin E to treat fatty liver disease But there’s not enough evidence yet to recommend them in every patient.

For an appointment, and further information on fatty liver disease, call us at 713-794-0700 and visit our website www.texasliver.com.

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Top Five Reasons to Evaluate Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD)

Dr. Rashid Khan adds this blog entry further reviewing important issues related to nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)

I few weeks ago I wrote on this topic as guest editor on Dr Joe Galati’s blog. We talked about some basic concepts surrounding Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD). To recap, this condition involves fat accumulation in the liver of non drinkers. I mentioned the importance of prompt evaluation, necessary investigations and potential therapies. Here I once again write about this common condition, afflicting close to 100 million Americans, highlighting five reasons why NAFLD needs to be taken seriously.

  1. The most relevant reason from a liver doctor’s perspective is the potential transformation of fatty liver disease to liver cirrhosis. Fatty liver is generally benign, but the development of cirrhosis becomes a game changer.
  2. Along with the potential risk of cirrhosis, comes the added risk of developing liver cancer. Studies have shown that this risk is even present in the absence of cirrhosis, though small.
  3. Cardiovascular disease( CVD) is one of the most common medical conditions in the US and globally. NAFLD and CVD go hand in hand. Usually both exist in many patients. Fatty liver is known to be an independent predictor of CVD.
  4. Type II diabetes is another very common medical condition . Numerous studies have shown the propensity of diabetic patients to develop fatty liver . This association is bi directional, meaning some patients with fatty liver will go on to develope diabetes.
  5. Finally, I will mention chronic kidney disease( CKD), another disease afflicting millions of Americans in this day and age. While the association of NAFLD and CKD may not be as robust as with CVD and diabetes, nevertheless it all comes back to the metabolic syndrome entity, which involves dangerous plaque build up in the blood vessels throughout the body.

 

Here at Liver Specialists of Texas, it is our sincere hope that fatty liver disease is recognized and evaluated in its earliest stages. Our practice is specifically geared towards the management of these patients, as well as other liver diseases, and we will be more than happy to see you in our offices.

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AASLD Liver Meeting 2015

AASLD Liver Meeting 2015

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For the next several days, liver disease experts from around the world will be in San Francisco learning and sharing the latest developments in liver disease at the annual Liver Meeting.

Today, the one-day postgraduate course covered common clinical conditions, including non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, hepatitis C, liver cancer/hepatocellular carcinoma, and complications of cirrhosis, including volume overload/ascites, malnutrition, and hepatic encephalopathy.

More updates will be posted through the meeting.

Dr. Joe Galati

Liver Meeting 2015

 

 

 

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Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease: What You Need to Know? Dr. Rashid Khan Explains

Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease: What You Need to Know? Dr. Rashid Khan Explains

Dr. Rashid Khan, Hepatologist at Liver Specialists of Texas, guest edited this blog entry on Fatty Liver Disease.


Obesity and Fatty Liver Disease

Obesity and Fatty Liver

In my 9 years of medical practice, it still does not cease to amaze me, that the public as well as the general physician’s perspective on fatty liver disease could be so wrong.

Every day of the week I see at least 10 patients with fatty liver, who have been told by their family physician that fatty liver is “no big deal”, and it is nothing to worry about. I tell them it is “ absolutely something to worry about”. Let me explain why.

Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease is a condition where there is fat accumulation in the liver of people who drink little or no alcohol.This condition is very common and generally causes no signs or symptoms, and generally no complications. Most people feel “OK” with this condition.

A wide range of diseases and conditions can increase your risk of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, including: gastric bypass surgery, high cholesterol, high levels of triglycerides in the blood, metabolic syndrome, polycystic ovary syndrome, sleep apnea, diabetes, hypothyroidism, and of course, obesity.

In some people with fatty liver, the fat that accumulates can cause inflammation and scarring in the liver. This form of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease is called nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, commonly called NASH. In its most severe form, fatty liver can progress to liver cirrhosis (scarring), liver failure, and even liver cancer. About 20% of patients with fatty liver disease related steatohepatitis can progress to liver cirrhosis, so the risk is not trivial. In these such cases, liver transplant is discussed, and may be the only option to survive.

Evaluation of fatty liver begins with simple blood tests to assess liver function. These blood tests are the ALT, AST, bilirubin, and possibly alkaline phosphatase.

Unfortunately, many times these liver tests are elevated, and ignored by both physician and patient. These elevated (and abnormal) liver tests may be the first indication that trouble is brewing in the liver. This is almost always followed by some sort of liver imaging test, such as an ultrasound, CT scan or MRI of the liver and abdomen. If I suspect a more advanced stage of fatty liver disease, I will recommend we perform a liver biopsy, a procedure that involves removing a small sample of tissue from the liver, and examining it under a microscope to look for signs of inflammation and scarring.

Unfortunately, despite extensive research in this field, no single standard and targeted therapy exists for fatty liver disease in 2015. In other words , no medication is currently the perfectly effective treatment for fatty liver disease. Almost always my patient will ask me , “Hey Doc, what pill can I take to fix this problem? And I reply there is none.

So we typically work to reduce the risk factors that have caused the fatty liver disease which are well known as I have eluded to above. If the patient is obese, we ask them to lose weight. Weight loss can be tough in the modern day lifestyle, but a committed approach involving caloric reduction and increasing physical activity usually works. Patients with diabetes and or high cholesterol are placed on medications to better control these disorders of their metabolism.

No alternative medicine treatments are proven to cure nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. The use of herbs, and many other widely available over the counter supplements not only don’t work, but can be dangerous. Some studies have shown that natural substances such as Vitamin E and coffee may help to reduce the damage caused by inflammation. However, more research is needed, and patients should discuss the use of these substances with their liver specialist.

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Latest News on Hepatitis C Cures

For tonight’s broadcast of Your Health First, Dr. Rashid Khan joins me to discuss the latest news on fatty liver disease, and the new therapies for hepatitis C, which results in a cure rate of over 95% of the cases. You can listed to the audio from the three segments here.

 

Dr. Rashid Khan and Dr. Joe Galati Discuss Liver Disease: Part 1 by Your Health First Radio on Mixcloud

Dr. Rashid Khan and Dr. Galati Discuss Fatty Liver Disease: Your Health First Part II by Your Health First Radio on Mixcloud

Hepatitis C: Dr. Rashid Khan and Dr. Joe Galati Discuss-Your Health First Interview Part III by Your Health First Radio on Mixcloud

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Alcoholic Liver Disease: What You Need to Know-The Basics

Our latest video covers the basic aspects of alcohol related liver disease, and the complications of excessive alcohol intake. In general, there are three areas of concern:

1. The development of alcoholic fatty liver disease

2. The development of acute alcoholic hepatitis

3. Alcoholic cirrhosis

The major point to understanding is that all alcoholic drinks (servings) have about the same amount of alcohol in them. Thus, 1-beer, 1-glass of wine, and 1-serving of spirit (i.e. vodka, rum, gin, etc) all have approximately 10-12 grams of alcohol in them. Alcohol is alcohol, regardless of the volume, color, or taste.

The other key point to remember, is that the amount of alcohol daily is different for men and women. For women, one serving/day is the limit; two for men. Period. Above this, you run the risk of complications.

View our latest video.

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New York Times: Fatty Liver Threat Tied to Obesity

New York Times: Fatty Liver Threat Tied to Obesity

6a00e54eea9caa8834011168d37593970c-500wiThe New York Times posted a great article by Anahad O’Connor, titled Threat Grows From Liver Illness Tied to Obesity. Click the link to read the full article. As a liver specialist, I see the effects of obesity daily, and the liver disease that results.

These are my thoughts on this:

Obesity is public enemy #1. Yes, cancer, heart disease, mental health concerns, and diabetes we are all familiar with. For the past decade, obesity has been tied to most of these conditions. I have patients that would rather continue the path of consuming processed foods, rather than make the decision to modify their diet. I have found that most adults, and especially those under 30 years old, have a limited range of cooking abilities-thus prepared foods are far more attractive to them, avoiding the need to cook a meal from scratch. The alternative to this non-change in behavior is a potentially slow and progressive slide towards more advanced liver disease, cirrhosis, liver cancer, and the need for transplant. What a choice: eat better and exercise, or get liver cancer? A 10% drop in body weight has been shown to slow the progression fat causes in the liver. Transplant is not the answer. Besides the massive healthcare cost, without a change in behavior, fatty liver will return in the transplanted liver within a year, and by 3 years, it may be as high as 50%. As a nation, we simply do not have the money to pay for all of this. The cancerous spread of fast food chains into every corner of your neighborhood needs to stop. In 10-15 years, we will have a generation of disabled citizens, riddled with diabetes, heart disease, and on dialysis. We will become a second-rate nation.

Look at this video we produced recently, which outlines some of the simple steps needed for better nutrition and health.

Added Bonus: Listen to my comments on Olive Garden

Your thoughts on this? I want to hear back from you.

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NASH and Fatty Liver Disease: Surgical Options

NASH and Fatty Liver Disease: Surgical Options

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Fatty liver disease is a hot topic here at the AASLD Annual Meeting. The complications of fatty liver including cirrhosis and liver cancer, and the central treatment strategy is weight loss. While bariatric surgery has been studies, presentations on less invasive therapies have been presented here at the meeting.

Early results of a number of studies looking at various endoscopic treatment options for treating obesity and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) are promising, according to Barham Abu Dayyeh MD, MPH, Assistant Professor of Medicine, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN, who presented data on these options during the AASLD/ASGE Endoscopy Course on Friday.

Emerging endoscopic technologies have opened the door to using endoscopic approaches and devices to reproduce many of the anatomical alterations of bariatric surgery endoscopically and thereby contribute to the effective treatment of obesity and its associated disorders, researchers noted.

For those with fatty liver, the discussion with your doctor/surgeon has to now include less invasive therapies such as endoscopic procedures noted above.

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Annual Liver Meetings -AASLD- in Washington, DC This Week

Annual Liver Meetings -AASLD- in Washington, DC This Week

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The annual Liver Meetings are taking place in Washington, DC, and I will report back on the breakthroughs, specifically those related to hepatitis C, cirrhosis, fatty liver, and liver cancer and transplant.

This far, discussion regarding the new hepatitis C therapies continue to report on the impact of new therapies on the cure rates we have been seeing in clinical studies. In addition to the new Gilead drug soon to be released, the FDA is favorably evaluating Simeprevir another soon to be approved hepatitis C drug.

Another popular topic yesterday and today has been non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD and NASH). The take home message for both patients and physicians is that those individuals with obesity, diabetes, fatty liver, plus fibrosis on their biopsy have the greatest risk for serious complications.

I will update the blog as new developments are available.

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