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Typical Medications Used to Treat Fatty Liver Disease


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When a patient has fatty liver disease, the doctor must evaluate the patient fully to determine how the fatty liver disease began. Is it because the patient was overweight or obese? Is the fatty liver due to diabetes and metabolic syndrome? Is the cause related to high cholesterol and triglyceride levels?

Thus, there’s not one medication for everyone who has fatty liver disease. Instead, the answer may be medication to lose weight, metformin to bring down the blood sugar level, or statin drugs to lower cholesterol and triglycerides.

If the patient is obese, Orlistat systemic medication may be prescribed. This is a peripherally acting antiobesity medication. Another peripherally acting antiobesity agent is called Xenical. However, studies don’t prove that these medications work to reverse the fatty liver disease. Plus, medications that cause rapid weight loss are suspect as to what other damage they may be doing in the body.

If the patient has diabetes, pre-diabetes, or metabolic syndrome, then Metformin is often the drug of choice. However, again, we do find that studies don’t prove that Metformin is working to reverse the fatty liver disease.

Statin drugs to lower cholesterol and triglycerides can cause a host of other problems such as a Coenzyme Q deficiency, related to muscle aches and pains and memory loss. Coenzyme Q is an antioxidant in the body, and by lowering antioxidant levels in the liver, you cannot really help the condition of fatty liver disease. Fatty liver disease needs high levels of antioxidants in order to reverse the progression of the disease. Medications that are in the category of statin drugs might contribute to fatty liver disease in the long run. Thus, you should be very cautious about using statin drugs when you have fatty liver disease.

The bottomline on the use of medications for fatty liver disease is that they can never be effective if you continue to eat an unhealthy diet high in fats, calories, salt and sugar. Only when you alter your diet and make it one that has nothing but healthy foods and beverages in it, and stop drinking alcohol will you begin to see improvement. 

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