Higher rates of alcoholic cirrhosis found in regions with cold, gray weather

A new study, presented at The International Liver Congress 2017 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands from April 19 to April 23, shows that climate may have an impact on alcoholic cirrhosis rates, according to Medical Xpress.

Alcoholic cirrhosis is a liver disease caused by the over-consumption of alcohol. Researchers analyzed data from 193 countries. Researchers took the data — which included information on heavy alcohol consumption and binge drinking as well as climate and hours of sunshine per year — from the World Health Organization and World Meteorological Organization.

The researchers found that every one degree Celsius increase in temperature was associated with a decrease of 0.3 percent in the fraction of cirrhosis attributable to alcohol. Sunshine hours were also independently associated with the burden of alcohol-attributable liver cirrhosis.

"As average temperatures and yearly hours of sunshine decrease and latitude increases, rates of alcohol-attributable cirrhosis increase. This suggests that drinking alcohol excessively to combat the cold and dark could put people at increased risk of suffering from alcoholic cirrhosis, stated the study authors, according to the report.

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