Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a condition that is connected to obesity, metabolic syndrome, and heart disease. As NAFLD becomes more common, it is important to have easy and non-invasive tests to detect it.
One test that shows promise is called Mean Platelet Volume (MPV). MPV measures the size of platelets in the blood, which are important for blood clotting. High MPV levels are associated with heart problems and increased risk of death after a heart attack. The best part is that this test is affordable, easy to do, and already used in many other conditions.
In a recent study, researchers looked at MPV levels in 290 people, including 124 with confirmed NAFLD and 156 without the condition. They found that MPV levels were higher in people with NAFLD compared to those without. In fact, MPV could even predict the development of NAFLD. Interestingly, people with NAFLD had fewer platelets than those without the condition.
The study also showed that higher MPV levels were linked to more severe stages of NAFLD, although the link with specific grades of the disease was not as strong.
Furthermore, the study found that people who were obese (with a BMI over 30) had higher MPV levels, indicating that their platelets might not be working as well.
Other research has shown that only NAFLD is a significant predictor of MPV, meaning it can be used to identify the condition.
In conclusion, MPV is a simple blood test that shows promise as a way to detect NAFLD. It is affordable, easy to do, and routinely used in medical practice. It can also help assess the severity of NAFLD.
References: Karaoğullarindan, Ü., Üsküdar, O., Odabaş, E. et al. Is mean platelet volume a simple marker of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease?. Indian J Gastroenterol (2023). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12664-022-01330-8