1Department of Medicine, Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, New Brunswick, NJ, USA.
2Center for Liver Diseases and Masses, Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, New Brunswick, NJ, USA.
3Department of Biomedical Informatics, College of Medicine, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, USA.
4Secondary Data Core, Center for Biostatistics, College of Medicine, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, USA.
Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the most common liver disease worldwide, with an estimated prevalence of 25% globally. NAFLD is closely associated with metabolic syndrome, which are both becoming increasingly more common with increasing rates of insulin resistance, dyslipidemia, and hypertension. Although NAFLD is strongly associated with obesity, lean or nonobese NAFLD is a relatively new phenotype and occurs in patients without increased waist circumference and with or without visceral fat. Currently, there is limited literature comparing and illustrating the differences between lean/nonobese and obese NAFLD patients with regard to risk factors, pathophysiology, and clinical outcomes. In this review, we aim to define and further delineate different phenotypes of NAFLD and present a comprehensive review on the prevalence, incidence, risk factors, genetic predisposition, and pathophysiology. Furthermore, we discuss and compare the clinical outcomes, such as insulin resistance, dyslipidemia, hypertension, coronary artery disease, mortality, and progression to nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, among lean/nonobese and obese NAFLD patients. Finally, we summarize the most up to date current management of NAFLD, including lifestyle interventions, pharmacologic therapies, and surgical options.