Korean J Med.  2008 May;74(5):463-471.

Liver stiffness measurement using FibroScan(R)

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
  • 2Liver Cirrhosis Clinical Research Center, Seoul, Korea.

Abstract

Progressive liver fibrosis is a similar feature of all chronic liver diseases and eventually develops liver cirrhosis. The prognosis and treatment plans of chronic liver diseases depend strongly on the degree of liver fibrosis. These facts raise clinical interests in quantifying liver fibrosis. Although liver biopsy has been the gold standard for assessment of liver fibrosis, it has some technical limitations and risks. Accordingly, an increasing need for alternative non-invasive method to quantify liver fibrosis has been a major challenge that has stimulated search for new non-invasive methods. Such methods for diagnosing liver fibrosis have progressed significantly over the last few years notably with the appearance of several serological markers which have been reported to predict the presence of significant fibrosis or cirrhosis in patients with chronic liver disease with considerable accuracy. However, complicated calculation, cost problems, and influences of extrahepatic conditions make it less accessible to clinicians. Recently, liver stiffness measurement using FibroScan(R) is emerging as a new diagnostic method for liver fibrosis. It is totally non-invasive and reproducible and gives an immediate result without intra- and inter-observer variability. Its clinical use in comparison with liver biopsy and several available serologic markers is now intensively being investigated. Here, we review the currently available data on FibroScan(R).

Keyword

Liver fibrosis; Liver cirrhosis; Liver stiffness; Fibroscan; Transient elastography
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