Noninvasive evaluation of hepatic fibrosis using serum fibrotic markers, transient elastography (FibroScan) and real-time tissue elastography

2008 Intervirology 51 Suppl 1, (27-33)

OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to investigate the accuracy of noninvasive tests, e.g. serum fibrotic markers, transient elastography and real-time tissue elastography, in the diagnosis of hepatic fibrosis, and to determine whether they can replace liver biopsy. METHODS: 119 patients with chronic liver disease were included in this study. Serum fibrotic markers including hyaluronic acid, type IV collagen, type IV collagen 7S domain and type III procollagen-N-peptide were measured. Aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and platelet counts were also measured to calculate the AST to platelet ratio index (APRI). Liver stiffness was measured using FibroScan and real-time tissue elastography. RESULTS: The fibrotic stage, determined by histopathological diagnosis of a liver biopsy sample, did not correlate as well with serum fibrotic markers although it was useful to diagnose liver cirrhosis. However, the stage of hepatic fibrosis correlated well with liver stiffness measured by FibroScan. FibroScan was also a much better predictor of liver cirrhosis than APRI. Furthermore, the levels of liver strain measured by real-time tissue elastography correlated well with liver stiffness (p < 0.05). CONCLUSION: Serum fibrotic markers and FibroScan are useful for distinguishing liver cirrhosis (F4) from chronic hepatitis (F1-F3). In addition, real-time tissue elastography is a novel and promising method to determine the stage of hepatic fibrosis.

Pubmed : 18544945