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Tech Vasc Interv Radiol. 2008 Jun;11(2):74-89. doi: 10.1053/j.tvir.2008.07.002.

Computed tomography and magnetic resonance cholangiography.

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University of Rochester, Rochester, NY 14618, USA.


In patients with biliary obstruction, determining the level and the cause of the obstruction is essential because it can be a key factor for the next step in diagnostic or therapeutic intervention. Noninvasive cholangiography, such as computed tomography (CT) cholangiography or magnetic resonance (MR) cholangiography, allows the diagnosis of cause and level of biliary disease with minimal risk. Traditional magnetic resonance cholangiopancreatography (MRCP) is an established and effective noninvasive diagnostic modality particularly for extrahepatic biliary tract evaluation. Intrahepatic biliary duct evaluation and functional MR, including evaluating for leaks and gallbladder dyskinesia and outlet obstruction, are evolving diagnostic techniques that show promising results. CT cholangiography techniques are especially useful when MRI is not available or contraindicated or when the quality of MRCP images is suboptimal. CT cholangiography is particularly useful as an adjunct to surgery or postsurgical cases. The primary limitation of cholangiographic contrast-enhanced CT cholangiography (the most prevalent type of CT cholangiography) is its hindrance by poor liver function and/or high-grade biliary obstruction. In this setting MRCP is clearly superior. There are different types of CT cholangiography and MRCP. This article discusses the types of CT cholangiography and MRCP techniques and their clinical applications.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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