Hi hope everyone is doing fine. I was diagnosed with alcohol cirrhosis since December 2015. I'm compensated now, I have my 6 monthly bloodwork, I have an endoscopy,ultrasound done but not once has my liver doctor gave me a scan of my liver or a fibrosis scan since 2015. I know doctors knows best but can anyone tell my why he has not. Thanks in advance peppy05
Scans alcohol cirrhosis: Hi hope... - British Liver Trust
British Liver Trust
You say you have blood work, endoscopy and ultrasound. If you have an ultrasound every 6 months then this is the scan that is most commonly done for patients with cirrhosis & it's the only routine monitoring scan my hubby has ever had in 8 years (& only once had an MRI and that was to check some lesions out a little bit more thoroughly).
Thanks AyrshireK, but I put that wrong I have blood work every 4 months but I only had 1 ultrasound since 2016 of my abdomen. That was all I had. Peppy05
Ah, that puts a totally different slant on things. I see you are in the USA from your profile so I wonder if the difference in scanning routine is an insurance, payment issue. Here in the UK it is written into the NICE guidelines for the treatment and monitoring of cirrhosis that the liver should be scanned every 6 months this is so that any cancers and other changes can be picked up quickly and at a stage where they can be treated etc.
It might be that you need to chase this up with your medics. Also you should have a blood test for AFP (Alpha-fetoprotein) which is a tumour marker and could flag up any issues with potential cancers - just because a cirrhotic liver has a slightly increased chance for this.
Thanks Katie I will. I do receive Medicaid it pays for every thing but it pays for scans without contrast there's a big difference with contrast. Thanks again Katie. Peppy05
You don't need contrast for an ultrasound and like I say that's the usual means of keeping an eye on liver 6 monthly.
Not contrast for ultrasound but for a scan there's 2 kind, with contrast and without. Peppy05
Both CT and MRI scans are done with or without contrast - with is normally better to give better resolution to images, however, for routine monitoring of cirrhosis it is usually only an ultrasound that is done.
In 8 years of having cirrhosis hubby has only ever had 6 monthly ultrasound scans. He had a CT scan during liver transplant assessment in 2014 and a follow up to check on the splenic infarction he suffered then had an MRI scan in 2019 to get a better image of some lesions that showed up so ultrasound it more the one that is routinely done (at least in UK).
Thank you so much for your reply Katie. Hope your hubby is doing well.
Can ultrasound detect cirrhosis? And differentiate between different stages of liver disease? Thanks in advance!
Cirrhosis is usually described as coarse dense echo texture on ultrasound often also including description of changes to liver shape/contour - I just read your post which describes your smooth and shiny liver - no cirrhosis there with that description.
Hi Peppy, I have compensated liver cirrhosis for 3 years, I have ultrasounds on my abdomen every 6 months and that covers my liver, spleen etc so to me this sounds correct unless any of the other members know different.
They should do an ultrasound every 6 months to check for changes, cancer and portal vein thrombosis. They generally won't do a fibroscan if you already have a diagnosis of cirrhosis unless the ultrasound reveals changes in your liver like improvement such as reduction of nodularity etc. A fibroscan would just confirm the diagnosis of cirrhosis but not give them any more information but if it is getting worse or better it could tell them that.
Hi toma123 that is correct I had the one fibroscan at the very beginning to establish my diagnosis.
Although you are US based, you may find it useful to read our UK patient charter that details the case anyone should expect to receive if they are diagnosed with a liver condition:
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