Table 2

Association between imaging-defined MAFLD with increasing levels of FIB-4 score and risk of having severe illness associated with COVID-19

Logistic regression analysesORs95% CIP value
Severity of COVID-19 illness (mild/moderate vs severe/critical)
Unadjusted model 1A
MAFLD/FIB-4 status
 No MAFLD (n=216)Ref.Ref.
 MAFLD with low FIB-4 (≤1.3; n=44)1.210.46 to 3.140.701
 MAFLD with intermediate FIB-4 (1.3–2.67, n=36)4.321.94 to 9.59 <0.001
 MAFLD with high FIB-4 (>2.67, n=14)5.731.84 to 17.9 <0.005
Adjusted model 1B
MAFLD/FIB-4 status
 No MAFLD (n=216)Ref.Ref.
 MAFLD with low FIB-4 (≤1.3, n=44)0.820.30 to 2.240.696
 MAFLD with intermediate FIB-4 (1.3–2.67, n=36)2.591.09 to 6.13 0.030
 MAFLD with high FIB-4 (>2.67, n=14)4.041.22 to 13.3 0.021
Sex (men vs women)1.780.93 to 3.440.079
Obesity (yes vs no)2.621.31 to 5.24 <0.005
Prior diabetes (yes vs no)1.040.40 to 2.800.928
Unadjusted model 2A
MAFLD/FIB-4 status
 No MAFLD (n=216)Ref.Ref.
 MAFLD with low FIB-4 (≤1.3, n=44)1.210.46 to 3.140.701
 MAFLD with intermediate/high FIB-4 (>1.3, n=50)4.682.31 to 9.49 <0.001
Adjusted model 2B
MAFLD/FIB-4 status
 No MAFLD (n=216)Ref.Ref.
 MAFLD with low FIB-4 (≤1.3, n=44)0.820.30 to 2.240.696
 MAFLD with intermediate/high FIB-4 (>1.3, n=50)2.951.37 to 6.34 <0.005
Sex (men vs women)1.790.94 to 3.450.084
Obesity (yes vs no)2.601.30 to 5.16 <0.005
Prior diabetes (yes vs no)1.090.41 to 2.890.862
  • Sample size, n=310. Data are expressed as ORs and 95% CI as tested by univariable (unadjusted) and multivariable (adjusted) logistic regression analysis. Diabetes was diagnosed as self-reported history of disease and/or specific drug treatment. Obesity was diagnosed as BMI>25 kg/m2.

  • In the adjusted logistic regression models, we did not additionally adjust also for age, because this variable is already incorporated in the FIB-4 score.

  • FIB-4, fibrosis-4; MAFLD, metabolic associated fatty liver disease; Ref, reference category.