Statins and NAFLD

Statins and NAFLD

  • Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is associated with metabolic factors, and insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes and CVD are the most common cause of death.
  • NAFLD-important health issue in India.
  • Statins are used to treat atherogenic dyslipidemia to reduce ASCVD.
  • Statins may improve liver enzymes and histology in NAFLD.
  • Treatment with statins may have beneficial effects on NAFLD and its liverrelated complications, notably including cirrhosis, portal hypertension and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).
  • Indeed, further to their lipid-lowering activity, statins also exert several systemic pleiotropic mechanisms that collectively may occur in improving steatosis, sterile inflammation, fibrosis and tumorigenesis.
  • Statins elevate liver enzymes leading to significant concern among physicians to prescribe statins in NAFLD are significantly underused in NAFLD and nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH).
  • Evidence suggests that the risk for serious liver injury from statins is quite rare, and patients with NAFLD and dyslipidemia are not at increased risk for statin-induced hepatotoxicity.
  • Hence, statins could be used by physicians to treat dyslipidemia in patients with NAFLD.
  • Paucity of data to suggest the usage of statins as a treatment option for NAFLD. However, it continues to be a matter of debate, and treatment of NAFLD with statins cannot be recommended at present.

Dr. M Mukhyaprana Prabhu

Dr. M Mukhyaprana Prabhu is a Professor and Unit Chief Medicine of Clinical Lipidologist, Department of Medicine, Kasturba Medical College, Manipal. He is investigator in international clinical trials in SLE, Type 2 Diabetes, Hypertension and ITP.


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