What are specific histologic findings in nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) or nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH)?

Updated: Apr 12, 2018
  • Author: Emily Tommolino, MD; Chief Editor: BS Anand, MD  more...
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Specific histologic findings in NAFLD or NASH include the following:

  • Steatosis, which usually is macrovesicular but may be microvesicular or mixed

  • Inflammatory infiltrates consisting of mixed neutrophilic and mononuclear cells, usually without portal infiltrates (in contrast to hepatitis C)

  • Ballooning degeneration

  • Fibrosis

The first three findings are used to calculate the NAFLD activity score, which is determined on a scale of 0 to 8. The stage of disease is determined by the NAFLD activity score and the amount of fibrosis present.

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