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Ultrasound Med Biol. 2013 Jul;39(7):1197-206. doi: 10.1016/j.ultrasmedbio.2013.01.020. Epub 2013 Apr 30.

Quantitative contrast-enhanced ultrasound comparison between inflammatory and fibrotic lesions in patients with Crohn's disease.

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Institute of Medicine, University of Bergen, Bergen, Norway.


The aim of this study was to determine whether there are differences in absolute blood flow between patients with Crohn's disease with inflammation or fibrosis using contrast-enhanced ultrasound. Eighteen patients with fibrotic disease and 19 patients with inflammation were examined. Video sequences of contrast data were analyzed using a pharmacokinetic model to extract the arterial input and tissue residue functions with a custom software, enabling calculation of the absolute values for mean transit time, blood volume and flow. Feasibility of the examination was 89%. The fibrosis group had lower blood volume (0.9 vs. 3.4 mL per 100 mL tissue; p = 0.001) and flow (22.6 vs. 45.3 mL/min per 100 mL tissue; p = 0.003) compared with the inflammation group. There was no significant difference in mean transit time (3.9 vs. 5.5 s). In conclusion, absolute perfusion measurement in the gastrointestinal wall using contrast-enhanced ultrasound is feasible. There seems to be reduced blood volume and blood flow in patients with fibrotic disease.

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