Women Have a Lower Risk of Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease but a Higher Risk of Progression vs Men: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis.
Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology
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BACKGROUND & AIMS: The risk of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and its progression may differ between men and women. We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis to determine the relationship between sex and NAFLD, nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), and advanced NAFLD fibrosis.
METHODS: Studies reporting sex-stratified NAFLD prevalence among population-based samples and either NASH or advanced fibrosis among patients with biopsy-proven NAFLD were identified from MEDLINE, EMBASE, and Cochrane databases through December 2017. We calculated pooled relative risk ratios comparing women vs men for each outcome.
RESULTS: Our final analysis comprised 54 studies. Samples sizes were 62,239 for the NAFLD analysis, 5428 for the NASH analysis, and 6444 for the advanced fibrosis analysis. Women had a 19% lower risk of NAFLD than men in the general population (pooled risk ratio [RR], 0.81; 95% CI, 0.68-0.97; I
CONCLUSIONS: In a systematic review and meta-analysis, we found women to have a lower risk of NAFLD than men. However, once NAFLD is established, women have a higher risk of advanced fibrosis than men, especially after age 50 years.
Biopsy, Female, Humans, Liver, Liver Cirrhosis, Male, Middle Aged, Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease, Prevalence, Risk
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