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Expert Rev Mol Diagn. 2004 Sep;4(5):593-7.

FIBROSpect II: a potential noninvasive test to assess hepatic fibrosis.

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Department of Hepatology and Liver Transplantation, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, 8635 W. Third St, 590W, Los Angeles, CA 90048, USA.


Many forms of liver disease may ultimately lead to fibrosis of the liver, the most advanced state being cirrhosis. Cirrhosis is a morphologic disease that eventually results in a functional change of the liver. It is generally not accompanied by signs or symptoms early in its course, and is often diagnosed late when signs of liver failure become overt. Imaging studies may suggest cirrhosis, but only if there have been gross changes in the appearance of the liver, and this is often not the case. The only way to diagnose cirrhosis reliably has been through direct histologic examination of liver tissue. The drawback to histologic diagnosis has been the risks and discomfort associated with liver biopsy. Hesitation to perform the procedure also exists due to lack of experience of many practitioners and the low reimbursement rates for a procedure that is viewed as time consuming and potentially dangerous. The search for noninvasive modalities to assess fibrosis through biochemical and other means has begun. Several markers are currently under investigation, many of which are combined with clinical assessment and other biochemical parameters, to establish the presence of liver fibrosis. FIBROSpect II is an example of a commercially available assay that employs a combination of three markers to distinguish between no, minimal and advanced fibrosis.

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