[SWE elastography in assessment of liver fibrosis]

Postepy Hig Med Dosw (Online). 2015 Feb 15;69:221-6. doi: 10.5604/17322693.1140338.
[Article in Polish]


Liver fibrosis is a relatively common consequence of chronic liver diseases, especially chronic viral hepatitis B and C. Biopsy still remains the gold standard in the assessment of liver fibrosis. However, due to its invasiveness and possible complications, less or even non-invasive methods are being developed, e.g. using biochemical parameters (Fibrotest) or elastography. Elastography is a new diagnostic tool that aims to evaluate stiffness of the tissues. Elastography techniques that are used in the assessment of liver fibrosis are transient elastography (TE), acoustic radiation force impulse (ARFI) and shear-wave elastography (SWE). SWE is a novel real-time two-dimensional elastography technique, which allows one to estimate stiffness quantitatively in kilopascals (kPa). Moreover, lapping elastography over regular B-mode allows precise choice of the region of interest. Therefore SWE creates the opportunity for accurate assessment of liver fibrosis. In this paper we describe processes leading to liver fibrosis as well as methods of liver fibrosis assessment, e.g. liver biopsy, biochemical tests or elastography. The main goal of this paper is to present the SWE technique, its role in liver fibrosis assessment and a short review of the most important clinical studies on SWE. We also present several examples of SWE examinations performed on patients with different stages of liver fibrosis - F0 to F4 on the METAVIR scale.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers / analysis
  • Biopsy*
  • Elasticity
  • Elasticity Imaging Techniques*
  • Humans
  • Liver Cirrhosis / diagnosis*
  • Liver Cirrhosis / pathology*
  • Liver Cirrhosis / surgery
  • Minimally Invasive Surgical Procedures


  • Biomarkers