In the United States, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the most common liver disease and associated with higher mortality according to data from earlier National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 1988-1994. Our goal was to determine the NAFLD prevalence in the recent 1999-2012 NHANES, risk factors for advanced fibrosis (stage 3-4) and mortality. NAFLD was defined as having a United States Fatty Liver Index (USFLI) > 30 in the absence of heavy alcohol use and other known liver diseases. The probability of low/high risk of having advanced fibrosis was determined by the NAFLD Fibrosis Score (NFS). In total, 6000 persons were included; of which, 30.0% had NAFLD and 10.3% of these had advanced fibrosis. Five and eight-year overall mortality in NAFLD subjects with advanced fibrosis was significantly higher than subjects without NAFLD ((18% and 35% vs. 2.6% and 5.5%, respectively) but not NAFLD subjects without advanced fibrosis (1.1% and 2.8%, respectively). NAFLD with advanced fibrosis (but not those without) is an independent predictor for mortality on multivariate analysis (HR = 3.13, 95% CI 1.93-5.08, p<0.001). In conclusion, in this most recent NHANES, NAFLD prevalence remains at 30% with 10.3% of these having advanced fibrosis. NAFLD per se was not a risk factor for increased mortality, but NAFLD with advanced fibrosis was. Mexican American ethnicity was a significant risk factor for NAFLD but not for advanced fibrosis or increased mortality.
View details for DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0173499
View details for Web of Science ID 000399174300007
View details for PubMedID 28346543