The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that the Rio Grande Valley has the highest rates of liver disease in the nation. Doctors Hospital at Renaissance has set to find out why.
“We’re not sure why. But we’re actively doing research to figure this out,” said Dr. Almeda.
Over the last five years… Physicians at doctors hospital at renaissance have made it their goal.. To help educate, research, and prevent liver disease. According to The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 25,000 people die from liver cancer each year in The United States.
“So often times we’ll see unfortunately a patient who has liver cancer when we enroll them in these studies you know they have four family members that are with them in clinics. Guess what, we’re finding liver diseases in some of them too. Those are people that never knew they were sick, never knew they had a liver disease just that mom and dad had a liver problem,” said Dr. Almeda.
Liver disease is not only seen on elderly people but also in people as young as 25. Right now it’s still unknown whether the high rates of liver disease in The Rio Grande Valley are due to environmental factors or genetics. However, there are several clinical trials coming this November to Doctors Hospital at Renaissance with hope that they’ll help in the research process.
“Those clinical trials are going to be initiated here at the liver clinic institute and they’re really focusing on none alcoholic fatty liver disease and the progressive form of that disease called NASH or non alcoholic steatohepatitis,” says Dr. Patil.
The three most common reasons for someone to need a liver transplant are Hepatitis C, alcohol abuse, and a fatty liver. That’s why doctors say it’s important for everyone to get tested to prevent liver cancer before it develops.