INTRODUCTION Chronic liver disease resulting in fibrosis, and ultimately cirrhosis, is a significant cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. None of the conventional imaging techniques are able to detect early fibrosis and compare its grade with the histopathologic scale. Liver biopsy, as the diagnostic standard for liver fibrosis, also has limitations and is not well accepted by patients. Magnetic resonance elastography is a well-established technique for evaluating liver stiffness and may replace invasive procedures. Detection of liver fibrosis in its early stages, however, requires a detailed knowledge of normal liver stiffness. OBJECTIVES This study aimed to determine normal liver stiffness values in healthy volunteers. PATIENTS AND METHODS A total of 102 volunteers (mean age, 21.6 years; range, 20-28 years) with no history of gastrointestinal, hepatobiliary, or cardiovascular disease were enrolled in the study. Liver stiffness was evaluated by magnetic resonance elastography with a 1.5T clinical magnetic resonance scanner. Images of the induced transverse wave propagation were obtained and converted to tissue stiffness maps (elastograms). RESULTS The mean (SD) liver stiffness for the entire group of volunteers was 2.14 (0.28) kPa (range, 1.37-2.66 kPa). For women, the mean (SD) stiffness value was 2.14 (0.30) kPa (range, 1.37-2.66 kPa), and for men, 2.14 (0.25) kPa (range, 1.54-2.54 kPa). CONCLUSIONS Liver stiffness in a healthy adult cohort did not exceed 2.7 kPa and is not influenced by sex, body mass index, or fat content.
- Healthy population
- Liver stiffness
- Magnetic resonance elastography
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine