Liver elastography uses ultrasound to measure the stiffness or elasticity of the liver.
Classification of the results will assist in determining how much elasticity loss there may be in the liver, an early sign of cirrhosis.
Through a hand-held transducer and gel applied directly on your skin, ultrasound uses non-radiation sound wave technology to create an echo image of the organs and vessels in your body.
Liver elastography replaces the need for the more invasive liver biopsy procedure and is primarily used in the monitoring of those with Hepatitis C.
Ahead of your liver elastography you will need to fast for 8 hours. This means no food, drink, chewing gum or smoking.
You will also need to abstain from alcohol for at least 12 hours and not exercise during the fasting time.
During liver elastography the ultrasound transducer will be moved over the area of skin above your liver.
At times you may be asked to hold your breath during the liver elastography.
Liver elastography usually takes around 30 minutes.
Liver elastography is a non-invasive procedure so you can return immediately to your usual everyday activities.
Your liver elastography results will be reviewed by a specialist and the report will be sent to your referring doctor. It is best to make an appointment with them to follow up on the results.
Liver elastography has been shown to accurately diagnose liver fibrosis in patients with chronic hepatitis C. Liver elastography also has been shown to have an excellent interobserver agreement. Liver elastography has been used to aid the differentiation of benign and malignant focal liver lesions and has been shown to be more accurate than the aspartate aminotransferase to platelet ratio index for the diagnosis of cirrhosis.