Liver Health Screening with a FibroScan (Liver Elastrography) Device
The liver is one of the most important organs due to its role in digesting fats, removing waste products from the body, and destroying disease, all of which can be negatively affected by our diets and modern-day lifestyles. Liver disease is one of the 10 most common causes of death in Thailand, with hepatitis B and C, fatty liver disease, liver cirrhosis, and liver cancer all prominent disorders. For this reason, regularly monitoring liver health is essential if we want to prevent or reduce the risk of developing liver disease.
What does a FibroScan involve?
FibroScan is a non-invasive technological procedure used to assess the liver for fibrosis, as well as for the amount of fat accumulated within the organ. It is painless and takes a mere 10 minutes to complete. In addition, the risk of complications is minimal, meaning that repeat screening poses no risk to health and patients able to return home immediately after the procedure.
Who should undergo screening?
- Patients with liver disorders or suspicions of a liver disorder, including hepatitis, fatty liver disease and obesity
- Patients suffering from cirrhosis of the liver
- People with a family history of liver cancer or hepatitis
- Patients requiring a detailed health examination
- People who have drunk alcohol regularly for a prolonged period of time
Preparing to undergo liver screening
Refrain from drinking any liquids or eating any food for at least 6 hours prior to undergoing a blood test and the FibroScan screening procedure.
Groups unsuitable for FibroScan procedures
- Pregnant women
- Patients with active implantable medical devices such as brachytherapy devices
- People under the age of 18 years old
Article by Dr. Sakkarin Chirapongsathorn
Gastroenterologist and Hepatologist
Physician specializing in digestive disorders and hepatology at Bumrungrad Hospital