Synergy Healthcare

Liver & Heart Disease—What’s the Link?

It’s not uncommon for health conditions to overlap; read our latest blog on liver and heart disease to see what the link between the 2 is!

According to the American Heart Association, about 25% of adults worldwide experience an accumulation of fat buildup in their liver. This buildup is referred to as non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). There are two types of NAFLD: non-alcoholic fatty liver (NAFL) and non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). Individuals with NAFLD display a harmless amount of fat buildup on their liver, known as steatosis. Nevertheless, individuals with NASH display high-fat buildup on their liver, causing inflammation and damage, leading to severe conditions such as cirrhosis, cancer, or complete liver failure.

NAFLD and the Heart – The Need to Know

Although it may not seem obvious — the heart and liver have a close connection in the body; the blood. A vein called the inferior vena cava is the main pathway for the blood traveling from the liver and lower half of the body into the heart. From there, the blood is pumped into the pulmonary artery and into the lungs.

Additionally, this connection is rather understudied, it is known that heart disease is the number one cause of death in people with NAFLD. According to the National Library of Medicine, liver disease can cause portopulmonary hypertension (POPH), which is a form of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) complicated by portal hypertension. POPH is a hemodynamic problem which can result in right heart failure and even death.

Raising NAFLD Awareness

A pair of hands holding a paper cut out of a liver.

However, during the initial stages, individuals with NAFLD often show little to no symptoms and report feeling well. This causes NAFLD to be often missed in medical screenings.

As a solution, Synergy Healthcare has built a Metabolic Health Initiative (MHI). In hopes to increase awareness of liver disease nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) caused by fat accumulation in the liver. The MHI seeks to promote liver health through diagnosis, education and promotion of targeted treatments. This also includes potential treatment through clinical trials.

The MHI will provide the following service offering to area participants:

  • Free physician exam
  • Free laboratory evaluation: Blood Count, Liver Blood Tests, Electrolytes, Blood Cholesterol Hemoglobin A1c
  • Free Liver Fibroscan: Liver Fibroscan assess for the presence of liver fat. As well as liver fibrosis that may cause cirrhosis and liver failure
  • Free Educational counseling and information material to reduced or reverse fatty liver disease
  • Referral to area internists and gastroenterologists for ongoing medical care
Heart disease and fatty liver disease can be linked.

Those that complete the MHI screening can receive a $25 gift card at the end of their visit.

To earn more about our Metabolic Health Initiative and how to get involved, click here or contact us at (941) 896 – 4948 to schedule an appointment today. We want to help you take care of the body that cares for you!


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