What Is the FibroScan® Test Used for and What Can It Do?
Throughout the years, the primary way to determine the state of the liver was through a liver biopsy. As a result of the latest advancements in health care, GI providers can begin testing the progression of a patient’s liver with a simple, nonsurgical ultrasound procedure, known as a FibroScan. At Digestive Health Center, our team of gastroenterologists provides this quick and valuable test to test your liver health and help you maintain your general health and wellness. To find out additional information about FibroScan testing and how it can help establish the overall health of your liver, reach out to one of our Ocean Springs, MS locations.
What is the FibroScan test?
The FibroScan test is a liver elastography that relies on ultrasound technology to discover liver damage. This simple test can discover liver scarring and stiffness to the liver. Liver scarring, known as liver fibrosis, can develop due to excessive alcohol consumption, a diet that includes a lot of fat, being excessively overweight, type 2 diabetes, and other factors. Fibrosis may cause liver cirrhosis, or extreme scarring and damage to a person’s liver. The late stages of cirrhosis might cause tiredness, unexplained weight loss, yellowing of the skin and eyes, known as jaundice, cancer of the liver, and, in the end, liver failure.
Where a liver biopsy would require a sedative, a surgical procedure, and several hours of your attention, FibroScan can typically be completed in ten minutes. FibroScan generally causes basically no pain, and most patients are allowed to resume their regular routine after their appointment.
Why is FibroScan critical?
Since there are several factors linked to liver damage, it is important that you take your liver health seriously. That is where the FibroScan test can help. After finishing the FibroScan, our Ocean Springs, MS gastrointestinal specialists can review and use the evidence to confirm and manage any established liver issues, such as:
- Alcohol-related liver conditions
- Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)
- Hepatitis B or C
- Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH)
We will also assess any liver damage that has continued to develop. Noting this information allows us to create a unique treatment plan to help treat you.
How long can it take until I get FibroScan results?
An added benefit of FibroScan is the results are usually ready within a day or two. Liver biopsy results can take up to two weeks. With the FibroScan, you will get your test results quickly, which could allow you to start your treatment plan straight away.
After we get your results, our team of gastroenterologists will call you or meet with you to discuss the results. Our team will discuss your results and what they mean for your liver and overall health.
Will I be able to address inadequate FibroScan results?
If your results indicate damage to your liver, there are several choices you can make to help reverse the liver damage or protect against further damage. Some simple steps you may want to take in order to optimize the health of your liver could include:
- Exercise daily
- Cut back on alcohol consumption
- Lose weight if you are obese
- Start a diet that is high fiber and low fat
- Work with your doctor to address your medications on an as-needed basis
Take control of your liver health today
A FibroScan is an effective way to prevent and protect against liver issues. By undergoing informative, fairly painless tests like FibroScan, you can easily understand the health of your liver so you can make key changes before further damage occurs. At Digestive Health Center, our GI providers happily utilize this state-of-the-art liver biopsy alternative. Contact one of our locations in Ocean Springs, MS to learn more.