AS A RESULT of advances in knowledge of fat metabolism and of conditions producing abnormal fat deposits in the liver, the treatment of such conditions has aroused great medical interest. In experimental animals it is possible to produce by dietary modifications two principal types of liver change, fatty infiltration and massive acute necrosis,1 and both of these may lead to cirrhotic alterations. The first type may be prevented in experimental animals by so-called lipotropic agents, such as choline and methionine; the second, by cystine.1
This knowledge was soon applied clinically. After publication of Patek's work,2 the advantage of providing diets rich in proteins and carbohydrates, relatively poor in fats and supplemented with vitamins was universally accepted in the treatment of liver diseases. Several groups of investigators3 then began to use lipotropic agents, especially for patients with cirrhosis of the liver and varying degrees of fatty infiltration.
MENEGHELLO J, NIEMEYER H. LIVER STEATOSIS IN UNDERNOURISHED CHILEAN CHILDREN: III. Evaluation of Choline Treatment with Repeated Liver Biopsies. AMA Am J Dis Child. 1950;80(6):905–910. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1950.04040020920003
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