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Prevalence and risk factors of fatty liver disease in the Shuiguohu district of Wuhan city, central China
  1. Zhongli Wang,
  2. Bing Xia,
  3. Chunwei Ma,
  4. Zhengguo Hu,
  5. Xiangqun Chen,
  6. Ping Cao
  1. Department of Internal Medicine & Geriatrics, Wuhan University School of Medicine, Zhongnan Hospital, Wuhan, China
  1. Correspondence to:
 Dr B Xia
 Department of Internal Medicine & Geriatrics, Research Center of Digestive Diseases of Zhongnan Hospital, Key Laboratory of Allergy and Immune-related Diseases, Zhongnan Hospital, Wuhan University School of Medicine, Wuhan 430071, P R China; bingxia2004{at}


Background: Fatty liver disease (FLD) is highly prevalent in Western countries, but recent data have shown that FLD is also emerging in China.

Aim: To investigate the prevalence and risk factors of FLD in the Shuiguohu district of Wuhan city, central China, during 1995–2004.

Methods: 12247 individuals (7179 men and 5068 women) over 18 years of age who were living in the area were investigated for FLD in the Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University from 1995 to 2004. FLD was determined by the ultrasonographic method. Height, weight, blood pressure, fasting blood sugar, alanine aminotransferase, total cholesterol and triglyceride were determined by routine laboratory methods.

Results: The prevalence of FLD was 12.5% in 1995, and rose gradually to 24.5% by 2003–4. The prevalence was twice as high in men (28.1%) as in women (13.8%), and increased with age in females, and males <60 years of age. Multivariate analysis showed that several risk factors were profoundly associated with the prevalence of FLD, including male sex, old age, obesity, hyperlipidaemia (cholesterol or triglyceride), fasting hyperglycemia and hypertension.

Conclusion: The prevalence of FLD in the Shuiguohu district of Wuhan city, central China, was shown to have increased during the 10-year period, 1995 to 2004. The FLD was found to be closely associated with sex, age, obesity and other metabolic syndrome features.

  • ALT, alanine aminotransferase
  • BMI, body mass index
  • FLD, fatty liver disease
  • NAFLD, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease

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  • Funding: This work was supported by a grant from the Natural Science Foundation of Hubei province, China (2006ABA240).

  • Competing interests: None declared.