FibroScan offers quick, painless diagnosis of liver disease
Liver disease is common in the United States. Over time, liver problems can lead to fibrosis of the liver and cirrhosis, a condition that is considered one of the top ten causes of death in the world. FibroScan® is a quick, non-invasive diagnostic test that can measure fibrosis (liver scarring). Also known as transient elastography, FibroScan is a painless nonsurgical alternative to liver biopsy. If you are wondering, “Is there a FibroScan near me?,” look no further. At Atlantic Gastroenterology, we have the ability to perform a FibroScan test right in our office.
Reasons for a FibroScan test
We may recommend having a FibroScan test done if you have been diagnosed with one of the following chronic liver conditions:
- Alcoholic liver disease
- Hepatitis B or Hepatitis C
- Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis
- Wilson’s disease
The test allows us to determine the level of stiffness in the liver in order to determine the best course of treatment. The more advanced the liver disease, the stiffer your liver becomes. We can also use FibroScan during treatment to monitor how well the therapy is working.
How FibroScan works
The FibroScan probe is similar to an ultrasound probe. The technician will place the probe on the side of your body over where the liver is located. The probe emits a small pulse of energy, which sends a painless vibration through the body to the liver. The FibroScan measures the time it takes for that vibration to pass through the liver. The faster it takes, the stiffer the liver is, and the more advanced the disease is.
Preparing for FibroScan
The FibroScan test needs to be performed on an empty stomach. We will give you instructions for when to stop eating depending on the time of your appointment. Make sure to wear loose, comfortable clothing that allows the technician access to the right side of your ribs.
The FibroScan Procedure
The FibroScan takes about 10-15 minutes total. The technician will have you lay down on your back, with your right arm raised up behind your head. A gel is applied to the area and then the probe is placed over where your ribs are located. There is no anesthesia, so you are free to drive yourself to and from the procedure.
The results from FibroScan will be given to your gastroenterologist for final review.
Benefits of FibroScan
- Painless and non-invasive – This is one of the biggest advantages of this test. FibroScan has become a painless way of assessing liver health. In many individuals, there are no outward signs of liver disease, so this advancement in technology can greatly improve our ability to effectively diagnose and treat liver conditions.
- Can deliver the same results as a liver biopsy – FibroScan can replace the need for biopsies in many patients, giving us immediate results and allowing us to accurately monitor the progression or regression of liver disease.
- Risk Free – The liver is a very resilient organ. It’s able to withstand years of damage and continually repair itself. Because of this, symptoms of a problem often do not surface until a patient is in the end stages of liver failure. For patients who have increased risk of liver disease, this quick and easy test can be a crucial step in receiving treatment.
- Excellent monitoring tool – FibroScan allows us to monitor the success of treatment and the effectiveness of lifestyle changes.
It is important to note that there are some limitations to FibroScan. Patients with a high body mass index (BMI) or those who continue alcohol consumption may not receive accurate test results.
About Atlantic Gastroenterology
At Atlantic Gastroenterology, we utilize advanced medical technology to ensure that we are providing our patients the highest level of care available. FibroScan is another tool we can use to effectively diagnose, treat, and monitor liver disease to improve our patients’ quality of life.
We provide comprehensive diagnosis and treatment of a wide variety of gastrointestinal disorders, including gastritis, acid reflux, colon cancer, Crohn’s disease, hemorrhoids, abdominal pain, diverticulosis, hepatitis/Liver disease, IBS, and more.
Dr. Shapsis is board-certified and is a nationally recognized author on a variety of gastrointestinal topics. If you are in Brooklyn or the greater New York City area and are looking for a gastroenterology practice that is committed to providing advanced screening technology for effective diagnosis and treatment, call us today at 718 521-2840 or visit www.atgastro.com for more information.
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