Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Index For Measuring Liver Fibrosis

Date:
February 21, 2007
Source:
John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Summary:
A new study to find a non-invasive alternative to liver biopsy when diagnosing fibrosis found that a series of simple blood tests can accurately diagnose the condition. Fibrosis, the formation of scar-like tissue in the liver, usually indicates damage and can lead to cirrhosis. The new series of markers, called FibroIndex, was found to more accurately diagnose fibrosis than two other indices that are commonly used.

A new study to find a non-invasive alternative to liver biopsy when diagnosing fibrosis found that a series of simple blood tests can accurately diagnose the condition. Fibrosis, the formation of scar-like tissue in the liver, usually indicates damage and can lead to cirrhosis. The new series of markers, called FibroIndex, was found to more accurately diagnose fibrosis than two other indices that are commonly used.

The results of this study appear in the February 2007 issue of Hepatology, the official journal of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD), published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

In patients with hepatitis C, determining the stage of liver fibrosis is important for prognosis and treatment. Liver biopsy is the gold standard, but it is invasive and costly. The current study tested an index of routinely available blood tests to predict significant fibrosis in hepatitis C patients and compared it to two other indices, the Forns' index and APRI (aspartate aminotransferase to platelet ration index).

Led by Masahiko Koda of Tottori University in Tottori, Japan, the study included 402 patients with chronic hepatitis C who were scheduled to undergo a liver biopsy between April 1994 and March 2004. Blood samples were collected within three days of the biopsy and patients who had previously been diagnosed with cirrhosis were not included. The researchers identified platelets, AST (a liver enzyme), and gamma-globulin (a protein in the blood that helps fight infection) as independent predictors of fibrosis and used these to construct the FibroIndex equation.

The results showed that FibroIndex was more accurate in predicting significant or severe fibrosis than Forns' index or APRI. By determining cutoff values to identify the absence or presence of significant fibrosis, the study found that 101 patients could have avoided a liver biopsy. In addition, the FibroIndex was applied to a subgroup of 30 patients treated with interferon who underwent a second biopsy more than one year after treatment. Changes in FibroIndex were found to correlate with changes in fibrosis, while APRI and Forns' index did not show this correlation. FibroIndex was also accurate in patients with normal levels of the liver enzyme ALT, one third of whom had significant fibrosis.

The authors point out that blood tests for the predictors used by FibroIndex are routinely available in most hospitals and laboratories, making it a widely accessible tool for determining fibrosis. Although other markers can be useful in diagnosing fibrosis, their measurements are less standardized and expensive. The authors note that the sensitivity of FibroIndex was limited, which may be due to variation found in laboratory tests. Nevertheless, they conclude: "The utilization of FibroIndex should decrease the number of liver biopsies necessary during follow-up of patients with hepatitis C and could safely provide longitudinal data on the progression of liver fibrosis." It could also provide important information on the clinical course of hepatitis C and help evaluate the effect of treatment.

Article: "FibroIndex, a Practical Index for Predicting Significant Fibrosis in Patients with Chronic Hepatitis C," Masahiko Koda, Yoshiko Matunaga, Manri Kawakami, Yukihiro Kishimoto, Takeaki Suou, Yoshikazu Murawaki, Hepatology; February 2007 (DOI: 10.1002/hep.21520).


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

John Wiley & Sons, Inc.. "New Index For Measuring Liver Fibrosis." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 February 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/02/070201144649.htm>.
John Wiley & Sons, Inc.. (2007, February 21). New Index For Measuring Liver Fibrosis. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/02/070201144649.htm
John Wiley & Sons, Inc.. "New Index For Measuring Liver Fibrosis." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/02/070201144649.htm (accessed July 23, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law

Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law

AP (July 22, 2014) Two federal appeals courts issued conflicting rulings Tuesday on the legality of the federally-run healthcare exchange that operates in 36 states. (July 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The new sci-fi thriller "Lucy" is making people question whether we really use all our brainpower. But, as scientists have insisted for years, we do. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Find New Way To Make Human Platelets

Scientists Find New Way To Make Human Platelets

Newsy (July 22, 2014) Boston scientists have discovered a new way to create fully functioning human platelets using a bioreactor and human stem cells. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

TheStreet (July 21, 2014) New research shows Gilead Science's drug Sovaldi helps in curing hepatitis C in those who suffer from HIV. In a medical study, the combination of Gilead's Hep C drug with anti-viral drug Ribavirin cured 76% of HIV-positive patients suffering from the most common hepatitis C strain. Hepatitis C and related complications have been a top cause of death in HIV-positive patients. Typical medication used to treat the disease, including interferon proteins, tended to react badly with HIV drugs. However, Sovaldi's %1,000-a-pill price tag could limit the number of patients able to access the treatment. TheStreet's Keris Lahiff reports from New York. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins