What is the role of ultrasonography in the workup of fibrolamellar hepatocellular carcinoma?

Updated: Sep 05, 2019
  • Author: W Ross Stevens, MD; Chief Editor: John Karani, MBBS, FRCR  more...
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Answer

Answer

On ultrasound,  fibrolamellar hepatocellular carcinoma is characterized as a well-defined mass that has heterogenous echogenicity. Ultrasonography has been used in the surveillance of the progression of known intrahepatic lesions. Percutaneous biopsy with CT scanning or ultrasonographic guidance may be necessary for a definitive preoperative diagnosis of fibrolamellar carcinoma. Ultrasonography is more operator dependent than CT scanning or MRI, and poor technique in scanning can limit its diagnostic usefulness. Ultrasonography may be limited by the patient's anatomy. Hepatic imaging may be difficult in obese patients or in patients whose liver is located high under the ribs. Overlying bowel gas may obscure portions of the liver in some patients. [8]


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