Magnetic resonance elastography is accurate in detecting advanced fibrosis in autoimmune hepatitis

Jin Wang, Neera Malik, Meng Yin, Thomas C. Smyrk, Albert J. Czaja, Richard L. Ehman, Sudhakar K. Venkatesh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


AIM To assess the value of magnetic resonance elastography (MRE) in detecting advanced fibrosis/cirrhosis in autoimmune hepatitis (AIH). METHODS In this retrospective study, 36 patients (19 treated and 17 untreated) with histologically confirmed AIH and liver biopsy performed within 3 mo of MRE were identified at a tertiary care referral center. Liver stiffness (LS) with MRE was calculated by a radiologist, and inflammation grade and fibrosis stage in liver biopsy was assessed by a pathologist in a blinded fashion. Two radiologists evaluated morphological features of cirrhosis on conventional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Accuracy of MRE was compared to laboratory markers and MRI for detection of advanced fibrosis/cirrhosis. RESULTS Liver fibrosis stages of 0, 1, 2, 3 and 4 were present in 4, 6, 7, 6 and 13 patients respectively. There were no significant differences in distribution of fibrosis stage and inflammation grade between treated and untreated patient groups. LS with MRE demonstrated stronger correlation with liver fibrosis stage in comparison to laboratory markers for chronic liver disease (r = 0.88 vs -0.48-0.70). A trend of decreased mean LS in treated patients compared to untreated patients was observed (3.7 kPa vs 3.84 kPa) but was not statistically significant. MRE had an accuracy/ sensitivity/specificity/positive predictive value/negative predictive value of 0.97/90%/100%/100%/90% and 0.98/92.3%/96%/92.3%/96% for detection of advanced fibrosis and cirrhosis, respectively. The performance of MRE was significantly better than laboratory tests for detection of advanced fibrosis (0.97 vs 0.53-0.80, p < 0.01), and cirrhosis (0.98 vs 0.58-0.80, p < 0.01) and better than conventional MRI for diagnosis of cirrhosis (0.98 vs 0.78, p = 0.002). CONCLUSION MRE is a promising modality for detection of advanced fibrosis and cirrhosis in patients with AIH with superior diagnostic accuracy compared to laboratory assessment and MRI.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)859-868
Number of pages10
JournalWorld journal of gastroenterology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Feb 7 2017


  • Advanced fibrosis
  • Autoimmune hepatitis
  • Cirrhosis
  • Liver stiffness
  • Magnetic resonance elastography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology


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