The Epidemiology of Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease: A Global Perspective

Mariana Lazo, M.D., M.Sc.; Jeanne M. Clark, M.D., M.P.H.


Semin Liver Dis. 2008;28(4):339-350. 

In This Article

Literature Search

We conducted a literature search using MEDLINE to identify reports that described the epidemiology of NAFLD in different populations and factors that affect NAFLD risk. We included studies published in English and Spanish up to December 2007 and focused on studies published in the 4 years just prior to December 2007. We also manually searched the references of retrieved articles to identify additional relevant published studies. The MEDLINE searches included various terms for nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, including different manifestations of the disease with additional terms for various risk factors such as insulin resistance and obesity. We extracted the following data from these studies: study location, population, and design; diagnostic criteria and method used to define NAFLD; prevalence of NAFLD and, where possible, of each of the stages (steatosis, NASH, fibrosis, cirrhosis); assessment of alcohol consumption and other potential causes of chronic liver disease; and factors associated with NAFLD. We present a narrative review of the results.


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