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Why you should care about fatty liver disease

The liver is a vital organ necessary for survival.  It performs crucial functions including protein synthesis and detoxification.  When excessive amounts of fat and lipids accumulate in the liver cells, this can lead to liver injury and cause a disease called fatty liver disease.  Fatty liver disease is a serious diagnosis that has become one of the most common causes of abnormal liver function tests in the United States.   Fatty liver disease is also referred to as Non Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease or NAFLD.  NAFLD is associated with other diseases which influence fat metabolism, such as type 2 diabetes.

Why is fatty liver disease important?

NAFLD is a single disease seen in both alcoholics and non-alcoholics, especially in those who are overweight.  When a biopsy is taken of a fatty liver, features of liver injury and fat deposit in the liver may be seen.  These findings are of crucial importance as fat accumulation may cause progressive inflammation of the liver over time.  This is called steatohepatitis.  Unfortunately, NAFLD may progress to cirrhosis. Cirrhosis is scarring of the liver, which may mean someone would later need ....

Swedish Organ Transplant Program Celebrates 40 Years of Kidney Transplantation, Receives Medicare Certification for Liver Services

SEATTLE — November 7, 2013 — Swedish Medical Center’s organ transplant program is celebrating two milestones this month – the 40th anniversary of its kidney transplant program and recent approval of its liver transplant program by Medicare.

Swedish is a longstanding leader in organ transplantation in the Pacific Northwest, particularly kidney transplantation. Now operating for 40 years, the kidney transplant program is the most experienced of its kind in the region treating more than 100 patients each year.

The recent approval by Medicare comes five years after the Washington Supreme Court approved the liver program’s certificate of need in 2008. The first liver transplant performed at Swedish was in September 2010.

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