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Gastroenterology. 2008 May;134(6):1670-81. doi: 10.1053/j.gastro.2008.03.001.

Diagnosis and quantitation of fibrosis.

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  • 1Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts, and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.


Hepatic fibrosis is the final common pathway for many different liver insults. Originally considered to be irreversible, hepatic fibrosis is now known to be a dynamic process with a significant potential for resolution. The diagnosis and quantitation of fibrosis have traditionally relied on liver biopsy. However, there are a number of drawbacks including the invasive nature of the procedure, sampling error, and interobserver variability. This article reviews the current role of liver biopsy in the assessment of hepatic fibrosis and discusses the role of the newer noninvasive methods including serum markers and radiologic tests.

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