For all you folks who have experienced the pain of liver biopsy may find comfort in knowing that a new technique is under trial in two hospitals in the UK that may replace the need for invasive biopsies...
I wish them boatloads of success.
This sounds similar to the FibroScan - something I've had done twice to assess liver fibrosis (I haven't yet had a biopsy).
If it is the same thing, it's 100% painless and very quick, hardly any different than an ultrasound. That said, it doesn't seem to be 100% accurate, or at least there's room for error, so that's a potential drawback for the moment.
I tihnk it varies from FibroScan in that it uses MRI technology, thus being a little more accurate. How successful it is though, only time will tell...
Here's a little more info from the manufacturers site.
i live in canada and i had a fiberous scan done 2x like a ultra sound non invasive and it tells us how far the disease has progressed i have never had a traditional liver biopsy,,,my doc said it is to risky and if you hit a certain spot it can give you neg,pos results where as the scan they try to scan the whole liver,,, because cirrohiss occurs in pockets thru out the liver ,,maybe this new scan will do a better picture,,amazing
I am participating in the Gilead trial drug program and have had this scan done twice now. It is done in an MRI machine. They do the MRCP and the vibrating scan is called an MRE. It's amazing technology and I hope it can one day replace regular biopsies. As part of the study I have to have both the MRE test and the regular biopsies done and they compare the two.
Thanks for that fcmmark, it's good to get feedback from someone who has had some experience with this scan. What you say sounds positive.. so lets hope this can eventually replace regular biopsies :-)