Is liver transaminases assessment an appropriate tool for the screening of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease in at risk obese children and adolescents?Nutr Hosp. 2010 Sep-Oct; 25(5):712-7.NH
Pediatric obesity has increased dramatically all over the world and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is one of the most frequent complications associated with excess adiposity. NAFLD causes serum transaminase elevation and liver disease, which could end up in fibrosis, cirrhosis and eventually hepatocellular carcinoma. NAFLD seems to be associated with the metabolic complications of obesity, mainly insulin resistance. The aim of the present article is to review the role of serum liver enzyme assessment as a suitable non invasive predictor of NAFLD in children. Although serum liver enzyme elevation does not accurately measure liver damage, it may be a valuable and non invasive test to screen NAFLD in children and adolescents and a marker to control NAFLD evolution. To detect NAFLD in obese children and adolescents, transaminases serum concentrations should be routinely determined in these patients. In this sense, it seems necessary to obtain transaminase reference standards for children and adolescents.