Digestive Disorders / Gastroenterology Expert Forum
echogenic liver
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echogenic liver

I am 63, have had hepatitis b, but it was knocked out with medicine.  I get an ultrasound every year.  The latest report reads as follows:  The previous study of May, 2003 was reviewed.
Again noted is diffuse increase echogenicity of the hepatic parenchyma without discrete focal lesions.  The liver is not enlarged.  There is no evidaence of gallstones.  The biliary tract is not dilated.
The pancreas, kidneys and aorta appear unremarkaable.
There is suboptimal visualization of the spleen; however, this appears grossly unremarkable.

Impression: Echogenic liver.

What does this all mean?  I always worry about liver cancer because I always have pain in the rib cage immediately above the liver.
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As has been mentioned below, echogenic refers to the liver having strong reflectors of sound, consistent with possible fatty liver or prior hepatitis.  Gallstones can cause a more discrete echogenicity - not the diffuse kind that was found in your study.

Followup with your personal physician is essential.

This answer is not intended as and does not substitute for medical advice - the information presented is for patient education only. Please see your personal physician for further evaluation of your individual case.

Kevin, M.D.
Medical Weblog:
kevinmd_b
2 Comments
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ultrasound is like sonar; soundwaves bounce off areas and are read as they return. Echogenic means it produces more echos; that is, it is firmer than normal. That is consistent with having had hepatitis. Since they refer to the whole liver as opposed to a specific area or areas, it implies it's what you see in the context of prior hepatitis. Cancer would show an area or areas of increased echogenicity that stood out from the background of the rest of the liver. Bottom line: evidence of prior hepatitis with no specific findings that are worrisome.
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The doctor didn't really answer my question about the pain that i continually have in the vicinity of my right lower rib cage.  I am wondering if this is related to my echogenic liver.
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A related discussion, echogenicity was started.
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A related discussion, echogenc liver was started.
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A related discussion, abnormal texture of liver was started.
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A related discussion, thyroid ca/liver echogenicity relation was started.
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