Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a spectrum of chronic liver disorders resulting from lipid accumulation in the liver due to causes other than excess alcohol consumption, such as metabolic syndromes, obesity and genetic factors, and has an estimated prevalence of 25% worldwide. NAFLD ranges from relatively benign non-alcoholic fatty liver (NAFL) to non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) to advanced fibrosis and cirrhosis; recent epidemiological studies have shown the increasing impact of NAFLD upon rates of primary liver cancer, Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).
To date, there is no pharmacologic drug available for NASH with the standard of care for NASH management consisting of lifestyle changes (e.g., diet and exercise) and comorbidity medication (i.e., diabetes and obesity). NASH has been associated with significant economic burden but there is little evidence supporting the true direct and indirect costs associated with the disease. Furthermore, the impact of NASH on patients’ quality of life is poorly understood. The HCD-GAIN Study (Global Assessment of the Impact of NASH – a socioeconomic study) aims to contribute to understanding some of the key challenges faced and is one step in supporting the evidence base for the NASH community.