Apnoeic–hypopnoeic episodes during obstructive sleep apnoea are associated with histological nonalcoholic steatohepatitis
Article first published online: 18 JUL 2008
© 2008 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2008 Blackwell Munksgaard
Volume 28, Issue 8, pages 1080–1086, September 2008
How to Cite
Mishra, P., Nugent, C., Afendy, A., Bai, C., Bhatia, P., Afendy, M., Fang, Y., Elariny, H., Goodman, Z. and Younossi, Z. M. (2008), Apnoeic–hypopnoeic episodes during obstructive sleep apnoea are associated with histological nonalcoholic steatohepatitis. Liver International, 28: 1080–1086. doi: 10.1111/j.1478-3231.2008.01822.x
- Issue published online: 6 AUG 2008
- Article first published online: 18 JUL 2008
- Received 25 November 2007Accepted 20 May 2008
Background: Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and obstructive sleep apnoea are associated with metabolic syndrome and atherosclerotic heart disease. This study evaluates the potential association between the NAFLD subtypes and a number of polysomnographical (PSG) parameters.
Methods: This study included patients undergoing bariatric surgery with extensive clinical and histological data for whom complete PSG data before surgery were also available. Excess alcohol intake and other causes of liver disease were excluded. Apnoea, hypopnoea and apnoea–hypopnoea index (AHI) were calculated as described previously.
Results: In this study, a total of 101 patients [77 nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) and 22 non-NASH controls] with PSG data were included (age 42.9 ± 11.4 years, body mass index 51.6 ± 9.5 kg/m2, fasting serum glucose 117.4 ± 53.4 mg/dl, fasting serum triglycerides 171.3 ± 82.9 mg/dl, 58% hypertension and 33% diabetes mellitus). Subjects with histological NASH had significantly lower lowest desaturation (77 vs. 85%, P=0.006), lower mean nocturnal oxygen saturation (91 vs. 93%, P=0.05), higher AHI (35 vs. 22, P=0.03), higher respiratory disturbance index (46 vs. 21, P=0.02) and higher alanine aminotransferase/aspartate aminotransferase ratio (1.4 vs. 1.3, P=0.05) compared with non-NASH controls. In multivariate analysis, the lowest desaturation (P=0.04) was independently associated with histological NASH. Lowest desaturation and mean nocturnal oxygen saturation were significantly lower in subjects with fibrosis (76 vs. 85%, P=0.004 and 90.4 vs. 93.0%, P=0.02).
Conclusions: Our results suggest that the frequent nocturnal hypoxic episodes in NAFLD patients may be a risk factor for developing NASH. Additional studies are needed to study the effect of optimizing sleep apnoea management on the outcomes of patients with NAFLD.