Spironolactone Study

If you are a woman aged 18 to 45 and have been told you have fatty liver disease, you may be able to participate in a research study at UCSF and get paid for your time.

About the study: 

This study will help us learn whether a medication called spironolactone can treat women who have fatty liver disease. Spironolactone is commonly used to treat other health problems, but we’re studying whether it may also help treat fatty liver disease and related conditions, like abdominal fat or insulin resistance. In this study, you will be asked to take the medication in the form of an oral pill every day for 6 months.


Am I eligible to participate?

You may be eligible if you:

  • Are a young woman between ages 18-45 years old.
  • Have been told you have fatty liver based on a liver biopsy or abnormal liver tests on blood work.
  • Are not planning to get pregnant during the 6-month long study.
  • Are willing to take an oral pill daily for 6 months.
  • Can travel to UCSF in San Francisco, California.


What's involved?

If you are found to be eligible to participate in this study, you will:

  • Meet with the study team at UCSF 5 times over 6 months.
  • Take a pill each day for 6 months.
  • Give small blood samples.
  • Have 2 MRI scans of the liver.

Will I be paid?

  • You will be compensated for your time after each visit and will receive free parking at UCSF.


How can I learn more about the study?    


Who is leading the study?


The study is led by Dr. Monika Sarkar, a fatty liver disease expert at UCSF. Her research focuses on understanding how reproductive factors such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and sex hormones affect fatty liver in young women, and finding and testing treatments for this condition. Dr.Sarkar has a dedicated women's liver clinic at UCSF to care for young women with a spectrum of liver disease, including fatty liver disease. Dr. Sarkar completed medical school at UCSF, internal medicine residency at the University of Pennsylvania, and gastroenterology and liver transplant fellowships at UCSF.  She is currently funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to study reproductive health and fatty liver disease in young women. She is a board-certified in gastroenterology and transplant hepatology.