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September 1974

Conversion of Free Fatty Acids to Triglycerides: Determination in Obstructive vs Hepatocellular Jaundice, and Cirrhosis

Author Affiliations

From the Section of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Medicine, University of Texas Medical School at San Antonio.

Arch Intern Med. 1974;134(3):457-460. doi:10.1001/archinte.1974.00320210067009

A group of 50 hospitalized patients with and without liver disease was given albuminbound (1-14C) palmitic acid intravenously. They were then compared in terms of the amount of total plasma triglyceride activity present after two hours. Patients without liver disease had values for plasma triglyceride activities ranging from 3.3% to 10.2% of the administered dose. Patients with extrahepatic obstruction had values falling within the normal range, whereas 24 of 28 patients with hepatocellular damage (cirrhosis or hepatitis) had values less than 3.3%. The four patients with normal values had little hepatocellular disease. Impairment in triglyceride synthesis correlated well with the severity of hepatocellular damage as judged by clinical course and other measurements. There was poor correlation with any single test of liver function.