Was reading a number of books and scientific papers on the topic, and found out that MRI is much better for screening for liver cancer then ultrasound.
It looks like the major HCC screening guidelines are not including MRI mainly because it is so much more expensive then the ultrasound and because it is inaccessible everywhere.
In the future I plan to in addition to my 6-monthly ultrasound also do 6-monthly MRI...if I have enough money for it...
best US are perfect for it because they detect from much less than 1mm nodules
detecting smaller nodules like those 1-2mm or smaller is useless in terms of HCC because there is no way to tell if it is HCC but waiting for those small nodules to grow bigger
the best way to predict HCC is combining the new blood hcc markers (not afp) and US
when i had cirrhosis the research center that followed me never used MRI for the following reasons:
magnetic vs sound, magnetic might make damage overtime
contrast needed to add much more sensibility and this is toxic to kidneys
once a hcc nodule is found it is best to use mri with contrast for confirming and staging but for monitoring although sensibility is higher it does not add so much to the best US machines available today
i had a suspect nodule 4mm big and mri with contrast was planned only if it was detected again after 3 months on US
my doctor (im in the U.S) insists on alternating between MRI/CatScan and ultrasound every 6 months.
They said MRI is safe as long as your kidneys don't have any problems. they always do a test for your kidneys before doing the MRI.
we need the kidneys for tenofovir and entecavir, remember there are no tests to see kidneys damage but only function and when function goes down half kidneys are gone already....the real point of this is money, mri is more expensive
another point is all nodules less than 1.5cm are not hcc in most cases and you have to wait and see if they grow to be sure they are, so it is not useful to use such machines for monitoring of all livers, even those free of hcc
the good thing about HCC is the studies on gcmaf, first clinic opened in nov 2013 in swiss and now 2 others opened in germany this is because they are injecting high dose gcmaf close to tumors by ultrasound guided needles and the rates of tumors reduction per week are increadible
yes. My doctor insists on 1 utrasound and 1 MRI or CTScan every year.
I don't remember what they test they ran for my kidney. I think they take your blood and examine it to make sure it is behaving normal.
They do it right before the MRI
Got my MRI results today...and yes the MRI is far far superior than ultrasound which didn't see a 16 mm lesion on my liver (which thanks to God seems to be just a cyst), which MRI (and I took it even without contrast) was able to see. Btw, I did my ultrasound with the most famous ultrasound doctor in my city.
People, forget the ultrasound if you wan't to seriously examine your liver for liver cancer, and do the MRI instead. Doctors send people to liver ultrasounds just because thats what major guidelines - health insurance agencies would rather have you done because it is way cheaper for them.
Please, insist you do your 6-monthly liver scans with MRI's, not with ultrasound....
Want to add the research fact...that the regular 6-monthly ultrasound is able to life-save only about 25% of the liver cancers, which leaves it useless for about 75% of the others who regularly follow it with ultrasound.
What a junk of a screening test....
Sources of this are many...the most reputable german scientist also state these in their book: http://pdf.flyingpublisher.com/Hepatology2014.pdf
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