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Can ARFI elastography predict the presence of significant esophageal varices in newly diagnosed cirrhotic patients?

Simona Bota, Ioan Sporea, Roxana Sirli, Mircea Focsa, Alina Popescu, Mirela Danila, Mihnea Strain


Aim. To establish an algorithm which includes the liver stiffness (LS) and/or spleen stiffness (SS) assessed by ARFI for the prediction of significant esophageal varices-EV (at least grade 2). Material and methods. Our study included 145 newly diagnosed cirrhotic patients admitted in our Department between September 2009-August 2011. 62 patients (42.7%) had significant EV. We performed 10 ARFI measurements in each patient, both in the liver and in the spleen; median values were calculated, expressed in meters/second. In 24 consecutive newly diagnosed cirrhotic patients admitted between September 2011-December 2011, we prospectively analyzed the value of the new score for predicting significant EV. Results. The LS and SS assessed by ARFI elastography, and the percentage of patients with ascites were stastically significant higher in patients with significant EV as compared with those without EV or grade 1 EV. By multiple regression analysis we obtained the following formula for predicting significant EV: prediction of significant EV (Pred EV2-3) score: -0.572 + 0.041 x LS (m/s) + 0.122 x SS (m/s) + 0.325 x ascites (1-absent, 2-present). The best Pred EV2-3 cut-off value for predicting significant EV was > 0.395 (AUROC = 0.721, accuracy = 69.6%). The accuracy in the group of patients in which the value of this score was prospectively analyzed was similar with that obtained in the first cohort of patients (70.8 vs. 69.6%). In conclusion, the proposed Pred EV2-3 score had a enough good value for predicting significant EV.

Key words. Spleen stiffness, Liver stiffness, Liver cirrhosis, Portal hypertension, Acoustic Radiation Force Impulse Elastography

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The Official Journal of the Mexican Association of Hepatology, the Latin-American Association for the Study of the Liver and the Canadian Association for the Study of the Liver

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