Novel Studies Underway at DHR Health to Find a Treatment for the Relatively High Incidence of Liver Diseases in the Predominantly Hispanic Community in South Texas

Image for illustration purposes only

Mega Doctor NEWS

Edinburg, TX – The prevalence of chronic liver diseases particularly among Hispanics in the United States has been steadily increasing in the last 2-3 decades. It is estimated that over 30% of people of Hispanic ethnicity in our community are suffering from chronic liver diseases namely Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD) and Non-alcoholic Steatohepatitis (NASH). While NAFLD/NASH are highly associated with many metabolic conditions (such as type 2 diabetes,  obesity, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, etc.), there is a strong genetic predisposition particularly in Hispanic population. This trend has been made more alarming by the pandemic spread of obesity in children as weight-gain during school-years carries a higher risk of NAFLD/NASH than weight-gain in late adulthood. Therefore, both nature and nurture play a significant role in the steady increase in the incidence of NAFLD/NASH in people of Hispanic ethnicity. 

NAFLD is a silent form of chronic liver disease that is suspected after elevated liver enzymes are detected in patient’s blood and is subsequently confirmed by MRI and liver biopsy. NASH is the detrimental form of chronic liver disease that if untreated, progresses to liver cirrhosis and liver cancer. Unlike in the past, NAFLD/NASH are now the leading causes of liver transplantation in the United States. Unfortunately, currently there is no FDA approved drug in the market to treat NAFLD/NASH necessitating the need to conduct clinical studies particularly in ethnic groups most affected by this disease.

“We are involved in a number of cutting-edge and innovative clinical trials aimed at the prevention and/or delay in progression of chronic liver diseases such as NAFLD/NASH” said dr. sohail rao, president and chief executive officer, DHR Health Institute for Research & Development. “Working with our community that is at a much higher predisposition to develop these chronic liver diseases, we are determined to find a treatment for this growing endemic.”

To get more information and/or to refer your patient, please contact (956)362-8047 or (956)362-2390 or visit