What Is FibroScan® Used For and What Does It Do?
In the past, the most effective way to ascertain the health of your liver was through a biopsy. As a result of progression in the field, doctors can now start testing the health of your liver through a straightforward, nonsurgical ultrasound procedure called FibroScan. At GI Alliance of Illinois, our gastroenterologists offer this fast and effectual test to assess your liver health, as well as help you safeguard your overall health and wellness. To get detailed information about FibroScan testing and how it can help measure your overall liver health, reach out to one of our many locations in the Chicago, Arlington Heights, or Peoria, IL areas.
What is FibroScan?
FibroScan is a liver elastography procedure that uses ultrasound technology to detect any damage to the liver in a patient’s body. This simple test can detect scarring and stiffness in the liver. Liver scarring, known as liver fibrosis, develops because of excessive alcohol consumption, a high-fat diet, being medically obese, type 2 diabetes, and other factors. Scarring of the liver may cause cirrhosis, which is simply immoderate damage and scarring to the liver. Later stages of cirrhosis will often result in exhaustion, weight loss, yellowing of the skin and eyes (also known as jaundice), liver cancer, and, in the end, liver failure.
Where a biopsy of the liver typically requires sedation, an invasive procedure, and hours of your time, FibroScan will typically be wrapped up in around ten minutes. This procedure involves virtually no pain or irritation, and often you will be able to resume your normal schedule immediately after your exam.
Why is FibroScan crucial?
Because of the many concerns that can be associated with damage to the liver, it is crucial that you treat your liver health with the utmost importance. This is where FibroScan is able to help. After finishing the FibroScan, our Chicago and surrounding Illinois gastroenterologists can look over the data and use it to establish and track diagnosed liver issues, such as:
- Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease
- Diseases related to alcohol consumption
- Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH)
- Hepatitis B or C
In addition, we can also assess the level of your liver damage. Keeping track of this helps us craft a plan of treatment specifically to meet your needs.
How long can it take to get FibroScan test results?
Another perk of FibroScan is that the results are often available within 1 –2 days. Liver biopsy results might take up to two weeks, however. With the FibroScan, you’ll be given your results sooner, which can allow you to start your treatment plan as soon as possible.
After we go over your results, our GI team will call you or meet with you to discuss your FibroScan test results. Our team will help you make sense of your results, as well as what they mean for the health of your liver and your general health.
Can I make changes to manage negative FibroScan results?
If your test results imply liver damage, there are a variety of things you can do to either reverse the damage or put a stop to new damage occurring. Some steps you could take to boost the health of your liver may include:
- Change to a high-fiber, low-fat diet
- Lose weight as suggested by your doctor
- Cut back on alcohol consumption
- Work with your doctors to change medications on an as-needed basis
- Work out daily
Schedule a FibroScan in the Chicago area
A good way to prevent medical issues is by taking control of your health. By receiving an informative, virtually painless exam such as the FibroScan, you can easily understand your liver health and make key changes before further damage occurs. At GI Alliance of Illinois, our team of GI providers facilitates this cutting-edge liver biopsy alternative. Contact a Chicago, Peoria, or surrounding area location near you to learn how FibroScan can help you.