Metabolic associated fatty liver disease (MAFLD) is a condition characterized by increased retention of fat in the liver. It is a chronic liver disease that affects both adults and adolescents. MAFLD is common in patients with metabolic diseases including those with obesity, type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome. If more than 5% – 10% of the liver’s weight is fat, it is called a fatty liver, or steatosis.
Metabolic associated steatohepatitis (MASH) is a more advanced, aggressive form of metabolic associated fatty liver disease (MAFLD). In patients that have progressed to MASH, fat builds up in the liver, damaging liver cells and causing inflammation. Over time, this can lead to liver fibrosis and buildup of scar tissue that prevents the proper functioning of the liver. At a later disease stage, patients are at an elevated risk of serious, life-threatening situations such as liver failure, liver cancer or even death.
Patients with MAFLD and MASH have a high risk for developing cardiovascular problems, with heart disease being the number one cause of death for patients.