Published online Nov 28, 2016. doi: 10.4254/wjh.v8.i33.1452
Peer-review started: June 28, 2016
First decision: August 22, 2016
Revised: September 8, 2016
Accepted: October 17, 2016
Article in press: October 18, 2016
Published online: November 28, 2016
To examine the relationship between pancreatic hyperechogenicity and risk factors for metabolic syndrome.
A general population-based survey of lifestyle-related diseases was conducted from 2005 to 2006 in Japan. The study involved 551 participants older than 40 year of age. Data for 472 non-diabetic adults were included in the analysis. The measures included the demographic factors, blood parameters, results of a 75 g oral glucose tolerance test, and abdominal ultrasonography. The echogenicity of the pancreas and liver was compared, and then the subjects were separated into two groups: cases with pancreatic hyperechogenicity (n = 208) and cases without (controls, n = 264). The differences between both groups were compared using an unpaired t-test or Fisher’s exact test. Multiple logistic regression analysis was used to determine the relationship between the pancreatic hyperechogenicity and clinical and biochemical parameters.
Subjects with pancreatic hyperechogenicity had decreased serum adiponectin concentration compared to control subjects [8.9 (6.5, 12.8) vs 11.1 (7.8, 15.9), P < 0.001] and more frequently exhibited features of metabolic syndrome. Logistic regression analysis showed that the following variables were significantly and independently associated with pancreatic hyperechogenicity: Presence of hypoadiponectinemia, increased body mass index (BMI), higher homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) score, and presence of fatty liver. Similar associations were also observed in subjects with pancreatic hyperechogenicity without fatty liver. Multivariate association analysis of data from participants without fatty liver showed that hypoadiponectinemia was significantly associated with pancreatic hyperechogenicity (OR = 0.93, 95%CI: 0.90 - 0.97, P < 0.001). This association was independent of other confounding variables. Additionally, an increased BMI and higher HOMA-IR score were significantly associated with pancreatic hyperechogenicity.
Pancreatic hyperechogenicity is independently associated with increased BMI, insulin resistance, and hypoadiponectinemia in the general population.
Core tip: Pancreatic hyperechogenicity is related to aging. Several recent studies have reported that hepatic steatosis and increased body mass index (BMI) are predictors of a hyperechogenic pancreas. In the present study, fatty liver was also significantly associated with pancreatic hyperechogenicity. We performed additional analyses excluding participants with fatty liver in order to account for the effect of this condition. Our analyses showed that an increased BMI, higher homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance score, and decreased adiponectin were also significantly associated with pancreatic hyperechogenicity.