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Diabetes tied to liver diseases

Category: Liver Diseases

Adults who have recently been diagnosed with diabetes may want to get their liver tested, as a new study has found that the metabolic illness can increase the chances of developing liver diseases, including cirrhosis and liver failure.

Researchers from the University of Toronto tracked the medical records of 438,069 participants who had recently been diagnosed with diabetes over the course of 13 years. They then compared these records to a group that did not have diabetes.

They found that patients with the illness were more than twice as likely to develop liver disease. Dr Joel Ray, who led the study, said that patients with diabetes often carry excess fat, and that fatty deposits in the liver may explain this relationship.

"Those who have diabetes may not just have higher blood sugars, but greater long-term insulin resistance and fatty load to the liver, which ultimately impacts on the integrity of the liver's cells," he said.

Diabetes has previously been shown to negatively impact vision, kidney function and blood vessels, but this is the first study to show that the liver may also be affected.

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