Quantitative measurement of ultrasound attenuation and Hepato-Renal Index in Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease

2013 Medical Ultrasonography Journal 15;1 (16-22)

OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to non-invasively explore new methods of ultrasound attenuation measurements in livers of patients with Non-Alcoholic-Fatty-Liver-Disease (NAFLD) and to measure the liver tissue elasticity. MATERIAL AND METHOD: Sixteen patients with NAFLD, twelve patients with liver fibrosis and fifteen healthy subjects were included. Echo Levels (ELs) in dB were measured at 2 and 7 cm depths in the right liver to calculate the attenuation. ELs were measured in liver and right kidney tissue to calculate the Hepato-Renal Index (HRI). This index was calculated both as a difference, HRI-diff; (EL Liver -EL Kidney) and HRI-ratio; (EL Liver / EL Kidney) using built-in software of the ultrasound scanner. Liver tissue elasticity was measured using transient elastography (TE, Fibroscan(R)). NAFLD and liver fibrosis were confirmed by liver biopsy. RESULTS: We found that HRI- diff was significantly higher in the NAFLD group compared with healthy subjects, 6.2 dB (0.8-11.4) vs.1. 9 dB (0.0-6.1), p=0.012. HRI- ratio was significantly lower between the same two groups, 0.9 dB (0.8-1.02) vs.1.01 dB (0.9-1.12), and p