European journal of internal medicine

Prevalence of steatosis and insulin resistance in patients with chronic hepatitis B compared with chronic hepatitis C and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.

PMID 25553983


The association of NAFLD with chronic hepatitis C (CHC) has been extensively studied but little is known about its coexistence with chronic hepatitis B (CHB). To investigate the prevalence and determinants of steatosis and insulin resistance (IR) in CHB and its consequences on liver injury compared with CHC and NAFLD. Patients with CHB (N=110), CHC (N=111) and NAFLD (N=136) were evaluated by biomarkers of steatosis (SteatoTest>0.38 as a surrogate for steatosis >5%), IR (HOMA-IR>2.7 as a surrogate for IR) and fibrosis (FibroTest>0.48 as a surrogate for significant fibrosis, ≥F2). HOMA-IR gradually increased in CHB, CHC and NAFLD: 2.3±1.8; 3±2.6 and 3.8±2.7 (p<0.001). The prevalence of steatosis >5% was 21% (CHB), 43% (CHC) and 82% (NAFLD), (p<0.001). The prevalence of fibrosis≥F2 was 10% (CHB), 42% (CHC) and 21% (NAFLD), p<0.001. In CHB, IR was related to host and not viral factors. CHB patients with steatosis had higher BMI (29±5.7kg/m(2) vs. 24±4kg/m(2), p<0.001), waist circumference (96±14cm vs. 84±11cm, p=0.001) and HOMA-IR (3.9±2.6 vs. 1.8±1.2, p<0.001) than those without steatosis. HOMA-IR independently predicted steatosis in CHB (OR=1.9, 95% CI, 1.09-3.27, p<0.05) and CHC (OR=1.38; 95% CI, 1.07-1.78, p<0.02). In CHB, metabolic risk factors and HOMA-IR were not associated with significant fibrosis. HOMA-IR was an independent predictor of fibrosis in CHC. Steatosis may co-exist in CHB patients but with a lower prevalence than in CHC and NAFLD. In CHB steatosis is related to host and not viral factors, and is not associated with the severity of fibrosis.