Transient elastographic evaluation of subjects without known hepatic pathology: does age change the liver stiffness?

2009 Journal of Gastrointestinal & Liver Disease 18;1 (57-60)

BACKGROUND AND AIM: Chronic liver diseases are investigated through invasive (liver biopsy) or non-invasive (FibroScan or FibroTest) methods. Recently the non-invasive methods have become more and more popular. The aim of this paper is to evaluate the liver stiffness (LS) measured by transient elastography in individuals without known hepatic pathology ("normal" subjects) and to see if it is influenced by age. MATERIAL AND METHOD: We examined a group of "normal" subjects by means of a FibroScan device (EchoSens, France). In each patient we performed 10 valid measurements and a median value was calculated by the device. The subjects were individuals without known hepatic pathology: healthy volunteers or patients from departments other than Gastroenterology in our hospital. RESULTS: We evaluated 152 "normal" subjects (87 women and 65 men, mean age 45.3 + or - 17.6 years). The mean value of LS in "normal" subjects was 4.8 + or - 1.3 kPa, ranging from 2.3 to 8.8 kPa. The mean values of LS in age subgroups were: 18-29 years - 5 + or - 1.3 kPa; 30-39 years - 4.5 + or - 1.2kPa; 40-49 years - 5 = or - 1.1kPa; 50-59 years - 4.7 + or - 1.2kPa; 60-69 years - 5 + or - 1.3kPa; >70 years - 4.7 + or - 1.4kPa. There were no statistically significant differences between the mean values of LS in various age subgroups (p=0.5263). CONCLUSIONS: The mean value of LS measured by transient elastography in "normal" subjects was lower than 5 kPa. Age does not modify the LS.

Pubmed : 19337635