Prevalence of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease in mainland of China: A meta-analysis of published studies

Authors

  • ZhanZhan Li,

    1. Department of Epidemiology and Health Statistics, School of Public Health, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan Province, China
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Jing Xue,

    1. Department of Epidemiology and Health Statistics, School of Public Health, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan Province, China
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Peng Chen,

    1. Xiangya Medical School, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan Province, China
    Search for more papers by this author
  • LiZhang Chen,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Epidemiology and Health Statistics, School of Public Health, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan Province, China
    • Correspondence

      Professor LiZhang Chen, Department of Epidemiology and Health Statistics, School of public health, Central South University, Xiangya Road, Kaifu District, Changsha, Hunan Province 410078, China. Email: liche4005@126.com

    Search for more papers by this author
  • ShiPeng Yan,

    1. Department of Epidemiology and Health Statistics, School of Public Health, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan Province, China
    Search for more papers by this author
  • LiYa Liu

    1. Department of Epidemiology and Health Statistics, School of Public Health, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan Province, China
    Search for more papers by this author

  • First author: Zhanzhan Li
  • Conflict of Interest Statement: All authors wish to declare that they have no conflict of interests in this study or its publication, financial, or otherwise.

Abstract

Background and Aim

Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is becoming an increasingly important health issue. However, there are no data on the change in prevalence of NAFLD within a population over time, especially in the mainland of China. The goal of this study was to estimate the pooled prevalence of NAFLD in the mainland of China.

Methods

Systematic literature searches were conducted in PubMed, Web of Knowledge, Chinese Web of Knowledge, Wangfang, Weipu, and SinoMed databases, as well as relevant articles published from 1997 to 2013, reporting prevalence estimates of NAFLD in the mainland of China. Summary estimates of prevalence were calculated with a random effects model. The effects of research methodology on the prevalence estimates were assessed using a meta-regression model.

Results

Forty-eight studies were identified with of a total of 356 367 subjects. The overall pooled prevalence of NAFLD was 20.09% (17.95–22.31%). Subgroup analyses showed the following results: male: 24.81% (21.88–27.87%), female: 13.16% (11.33–15.11%), for 18–30: 9.22% (6.93–11.81%), for 40: 16.77% (13.22–20.66%), for 50: 23.50% (19.57–27.66%), for 60: 26.89% (21.11–33.09%), for urban: 21.83% (18.00–25.92%), for rural: 20.43% (8.01–36.74%); study years in 2000–2006: 18.22% (14.32–22.48%), 20.00% (16.84–23.36%) for 2007–2009, and 18.93% (15.41–22.72%) for 2010–2013.

Conclusions

The prevalence of NAFLD is lower than the estimates from developed countries. But it still reaches the epidemic proportions, and its prevalence is increasing. Meanwhile, a nationwide prevalence investigation should be conducted to confirm the estimates and determine more accurate rates for specific populations.

Ancillary