What can biopsy show the MRCP did not?

I am facing my liver biopsy tomorrow and I am wondering what the biopsy may show the MRCP did not. The MRCP came back normal so I was not sure if that means likely the biopsy will be good results as well, or what different things it would show.

I'm sure the Urso is working though. I'm getting less yellow by the day. My eyes were the color of lemons a week ago and now we're closer to lemonade. 😃

9 Replies

  • I'm done with the biopsy, 4 hours of bed rest before I can leave. The answer to my question in case anyone else was wondering is the MRCP is a big picture test. It shows how things are functioning. The biopsy shows changes at the cellular level. When I asked if this was the definitive answer to what is going on, he said most likely I will get an answer, but nothing in medicine is 100%.

  • Hi there. The thing with a biopsy is that it generally takes only 1/50,000th of the liver! While it can tell you what is going on in that tiny piece it doesn't mean the rest of the liver is the same - some parts can be different (better or worse). That's probably what the doctor meant about it not being 100%.

  • Thanks, that makes sense.

  • So is it worth having a biopsy? I'm due to see consultant on Thursday and my nurse specialist said he may request a biopsy but if it's not really going to give a complete picture I'd rather not have one. Sounds like the MRCP is a better option. I've had a fibroscan and ultrasound, both normal.

  • I personally feel better having a biopsy as opposed to not. I had an ultrasound and the MRCP before the biopsy yesterday and everything has come back normal. And yet, I'm yellow, jaundiced... so something is wrong.

    I have seen people argue both sides of the issue here, the treatment is the same pretty much no matter how far along it is, I believe. I'm new here, never even heard of PBC until the past few weeks so someone may be along to correct me.

    But for me, I am glad to have the biopsy. I know it is not a definitive answer, but... another piece of the picture I guess and for me, that's better than nothing.

    The biopsy itself was not bad. I'm sore today, and was very tired yesterday but overall it was not bad.

  • I prefer biopsy too..👍🏼

  • I think I'm just scared to have one but your right, it is another piece in the jigsaw, I'll see what consultant says tomorrow.

  • Good luck tomorrow! I understand your fear. The actual procedure really was not that bad though. I was very teary afterwards, but I am just so overwhelmed by all of this. I am still just wrapping my head around everything and being in limbo... not knowing how bad it is or what is to come... is worse than having the full information for me.

    And since we had to bring our 2 month old baby to the hospital, I had to be alone afterwards for the 4 hours of bedrest. But otherwise, it was not bad and I was very scared walking in there.

  • I had a biopsy in my late twenties when a different GI tried to tell me I had hep C. Which was not the problem🙄. Had another one in my early thirties, still showed nothing different. My GI specialist now, gave me one at diagnosis in 2012. That was the only one from my doctors that I've had since diagnosis. They say that it doesn't make any difference because Im on the treatment of Urso/ocaliva. There's no changing the treatment & no changing the fact of having PBC, so no reason to disrupt the liver any more than it already is, plus there is a risk of a bleed. Im thankful for no more biopsies. My specialists prefer to use what's called a Fibrometer Virus which is simply done with bloodwork 😊

    Stay strong❣️


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