Evaluation of the feasibility of screening for paediatric non-alcoholic fatty liver disease

Amsterdam Paediatric Obesity Collaboration

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Aim: To evaluate the feasibility of screening for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) in clinical practice and the acceptance of a screening strategy, and to identify factors that determine compliance. Methods: A screening protocol, based on alanine aminotransferase measurement and introduced to healthcare workers of Dutch outpatient obesity clinics in 2017, was evaluated. Medical files of children who visited the largest outpatient obesity clinic between 2017 and 2020 were evaluated. Focus group discussions (FGDs) were conducted with 14 healthcare workers who had been using the screening protocol. Results: Screening for NAFLD was performed in 477/571 (84%) of the children. Loss of follow-up was the major reason for inadequate screening. Follow-up was performed in 81/134 children with an abnormal screening result (61%). The FGDs indicated 13 barriers for screening, regarding guideline- and knowledge-related issues. Conclusion: Screening for NAFLD was performed in the vast majority of the children. However, adherence to the guideline after an abnormal initial screening result needs to be improved. This can be achieved by improving the loss of follow-up of patients' and physicians' awareness of the relevance of mildly elevated ALT levels.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2408-2415
Number of pages8
JournalActa Paediatrica, International Journal of Paediatrics
Issue number12
Early online date2022
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


  • children
  • guideline
  • non-alcoholic fatty liver disease
  • obesity
  • screening

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