Display Settings:

Format

Send to:

Choose Destination
World J Gastroenterol. 2008 Jun 14;14(22):3476-83.

Non-invasive means of measuring hepatic fat content.

Author information

  • 1Department of Metabolic Medicine, Division of Medicine, Imperial College London, St Mary's Campus, 2nd Floor, Mint Wing, St Mary's Hospital, Praed Street, London W2 1NY, United Kingdom. s.mehta@imperial.ac.uk

Abstract

Hepatic steatosis affects 20% to 30% of the general adult population in the western world. Currently, the technique of choice for determining hepatic fat deposition and the stage of fibrosis is liver biopsy. However, it is an invasive procedure and its use is limited, particularly in children. It may also be subject to sampling error. Non-invasive techniques such as ultrasound, computerised tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy ((1)H MRS) can detect hepatic steatosis, but currently cannot distinguish between simple steatosis and steatohepatitis, or stage the degree of fibrosis accurately. Ultrasound is widely used to detect hepatic steatosis, but its sensitivity is reduced in the morbidly obese and also in those with small amounts of fatty infiltration. It has been used to grade hepatic fat content, but this is subjective. CT can detect hepatic steatosis, but exposes subjects to ionising radiation, thus limiting its use in longitudinal studies and in children. Recently, magnetic resonance (MR) techniques using chemical shift imaging have provided a quantitative assessment of the degree of hepatic fatty infiltration, which correlates well with liver biopsy results in the same patients. Similarly, in vivo (1)H MRS is a fast, safe, non-invasive method for the quantification of intrahepatocellular lipid (IHCL) levels. Both techniques will be useful tools in future longitudinal clinical studies, either in examining the natural history of conditions causing hepatic steatosis (e.g. non-alcoholic fatty liver disease), or in testing new treatments for these conditions.

PMID:
18567074
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2716608
Free PMC Article

Images from this publication.See all images (5)Free text

Figure 1
Figure 2
Figure 3
Figure 4
Figure 5
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Baishideng Publishing Group Co., Limited Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk