Jefferson University Hospitals

MR & Ultrasound Elastography

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MR & Ultrasound Elastography

Our radiologists are using a new, non-invasive procedure known as elastography to assess your liver disease using MRI or ultrasound.

This advanced imaging method couples the imaging of an MRI with sound waves to provide doctors a visual "map" – or elastogram – of the stiffness in body tissues, including the percentage of fat and iron in the liver.

Why Elastography?

Until recently, the gold standard for diagnosing liver scarring (also known as fibrosis) from chronic liver disease has been a liver biopsy, which aren't ideal for monitoring ongoing treatments for every patient. Elastography – an alternative to liver biopsy – has the potential to significantly improve the outcome of your condition. The test, with fat and iron measurements, allows your doctor to better evaluate the following conditions:

What should I expect?

The elastography screening with fat and iron levels will take less than five minutes. You can expect to have a small pad placed on your abdomen which will produce a low-frequency vibration intended to pass through your liver. The speed of the vibrations will determine the stiffness of your liver tissue. Ultrasound elastography uses the same equipment as a conventional ultrasound examination to determine the stiffness of your liver tissue.

Neither MR elastography nor ultrasound elastography require ionizing radiation. Your doctor will ask you to fast 4 to 6 hours prior to the exam in order to gather the most accurate results. 

Locations & Appointments

We’re now performing magnetic resonance (MR) elastography in both Center City at Jefferson Hospital for Neuroscience and in South Philadelphia at Methodist Hospital.

Ultrasound elastography is available at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital and our outpatient ultrasound facility located in the Clinical Outpatient Building (COB) in Center City and at Methodist Hospital. 

Jefferson Hospital for Neuroscience
900 Walnut Street 
Philadelphia, PA 19107

Thomas Jefferson University Hospital
111 South 11th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107

Methodist Hospital
2301 South Broad Street
Philadelphia, PA 19148